Quarantine (shipping)

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The international maritime signal for the letter "L" is used as the quarantine flag

A Quarantine is a restraint placed on an operation to protect the public against a health hazard. The term "quarantine" comes from the Italian word for "forty," referring to the forty-day period ships were forced to wait in ports during the Black Death. A ship may be quarantined so that it cannot leave a protected point. During the quarantine period, the quarantine flag is hoisted.[1]


  1. U.S. Department of Transportation Maritime Administration