TOKYO – The KSL Olympic team arrived in Japan, and what a journey it was for everyone to get there.
The journey to Tokyo began with a familiar sight – the COVID-19 testing. One 96 hours before departure, then another at 72 hours.
With negative results, the team headed to Salt Lake City International Airport on July 16 – that 4am arrival time was a bit difficult for some.
– Shara Park (@KSLSharaPark) July 16, 2021
After a short stopover in Seattle, they left for a 10-hour flight to Japan.
And they agreed – it went pretty quickly.
– Alex Cabrero (@KSL_AlexCabrero) July 17, 2021
Once in the field, COVID-19 protocols continued – paperwork, certified test results and another COVID-19 test.
Everything had to be perfect – and negative – for the team to move on – and it was.
Tokyo is beautiful! Lots of trees, water and small city parks everywhere. It’s also strangely empty. Tokyo is in another state of emergency because of Covid. Hard to believe that millions of people live here. We are also quarantined for 14 days in our hotel room and our workspace. @ KSL5TV pic.twitter.com/nUVbkvFFHr
– Alex Cabrero (@KSL_AlexCabrero) July 18, 2021
Once on the bus, they headed for the hotel. Right away, they noticed that the streets were pretty empty here in Japan. Tokyo is currently in a state of emergency due to the pandemic which lasts until the end of the Games.
In the hotel – a quick temperature check and then in their rooms.
This is insane! It’s a look inside the International Broadcasting Center, it’s the brain of the Olympics. Everything you see and hear comes through here. The number of feeds monitored throughout the day is 🤯. @ KSL5TV @kslsports #ksltv #TokyoOlympics # Tokyo2020 pic.twitter.com/6E3VoxdkUM
– Shara Park (@KSLSharaPark) July 19, 2021
KSL’s Shara Park, Alex Cabrero and Jerimiah Jensen are in the midst of a 14-day quarantine, and they are only allowed to move between the hotel, the International Broadcast Center and the NBC workspace at the Hilton Odaiba hotel.
But even though they weren’t allowed to use public transportation or go out on the streets, they were able to collect stories and work with media partners and come up with fun stories to tell.
I’m not kidding when I say these guys ain’t used to getting up so late, look @KSL_AlexCabrero . In our defense, our biological clocks are so out of date that we are 15 hours ahead here in Tokyo. @ KSL5TV pic.twitter.com/DUmcJPXlhT
– Shara Park (@KSLSharaPark) July 21, 2021
More than 11,000 athletes will compete in 339 events at 42 venues over the next two and a half weeks.
Organizers spent $ 6.7 billion on the Tokyo Games – everything from renovating venues to supplies needed to protect everyone from COVID-19.
– Alex Cabrero (@KSL_AlexCabrero) July 21, 2021
Safety is one of the most important elements of these games – cases of COVID-19 have already arisen among athletes.
Our days are filled with Covid testing and temperature checks, we do our best to stay safe and make sure the games can continue! #TokyoOlympics #be careful #Olympic Games #In the wings #media @ KSL5TV @kslsports pic.twitter.com/ZncMhrjgL1
– Aubrey Shafer (@RLaubservations) July 21, 2021
KSL learned on Wednesday that Utah’s Jake Gibb no longer had a beach volleyball partner after Taylor Crabb tested positive for the virus, and University of Utah gymnast Kara Eaker, a replacement for the US team, tested positive earlier this week and is now in isolation.