Navy reports 2 ships in Middle East facing coronavirus outbreaks
Two US warships break records for days at sea
Two U.S. warships have broken records for the amount of days they've spent at sea as coronavirus advisories made stops in foreign countries too risky.
Navy Capt. Kyle Higgins told The Associated Press the milestone "is not one that I think we really wanted but one that the circumstances of the world thrust upon us. And we embraced it with style."
The ships last left the U.S. in January and marked their 161st day at sea on Thursday, breaking the previous Navy record of 160 days. The ships don't plan to return to Virginia until later this year.
"It'll be 161 days when we break the record, but we think we may be out here a little bit longer and the potential to pass that mark by quite a bit is fairly good," Higgins said. "So we might wait for a more round, even number."
In March, Vice Adm. Jim Malloy, the Navy's 5th Fleet commander, ordered a stop to all port visits as the virus began to spread globally and after more than 100 sailors on the USS Roosevelt stationed in Guam tested positive for COVID-19.
Capt. Brett Crozier was removed from his command of the Roosevelt after a letter he wrote pleading for help amid a coronavirus outbreak aboard the ship was leaked to the press.