Governor urges caution in holding Labor Day weekend get-togethers


Gov. John Carney says the state faces a challenge in getting through Labor Day weekend without coronavirus outbreaks. It comes as the state is seeing an uptick in Covid-19 cases.

In cautioning Dawareans to remain careful when holding get-togethers, Carney cited words of caution from Dr. Anthony Fauci. The prominent epidemiologist spoke at a weekly meeting of the nation’s governors. Carney spoke at the weekly Covid-19 press briefing.

Jamie Mack of the Delaware Division of Public Health reported that enforcement efforts have been stepped up at restaurants and bars with 400 inspections taking place.

He noted that 150 establishments had no violations. However, fines have been levied at in one case, an establishment was closed down on the spot, with police called to enforce the order.

DPH is now shifting its enforcement focus from the beach areas to Newark as students return to the University of Delaware.

Mack noted that compliance trends are moving in the right direction at the beach and among businesses in general.

The division hopes to loosen the ban on bar seating at some beach zip codes. The restrictions were put in place during an outbreak of Covid-19 that came after senior week.

On the minus side, Carney noted that the rate of positive cases has risen and is now above the five percent benchmark.

Tuesday figures from the Delaware Division of Public Health showed a 5.2 percent rate of positive cases. Over the past couple of weeks, the rate had dropped into the 4.5 percent range.

For more data, including breakdowns by age, sex, race/ethnicity, at the statewide, county, and, in some cases, ZIP code or census tract level:

The number of people hospitalized has risen to 64 after dropping below 30. Carney said no indications of an outbreak or other problems have been reported by hospitals. During the height of the pandemic, the number of hospitalizations had risen above 400.

The governor and other state officials would like to see the rate of positive tests move toward the three percent mark. That would allow for more in-person instruction in schools as well as fewer restrictions on bars and restaurants.

He again noted that positive tests remain higher in Sussex County, home of past outbreaks in the beach community, and among poultry workers and their families.

Additional demographic data on COVID-19 cases and deaths, including race/ethnicity, more age-specific data and rates information by ZIP code, and information on Delaware’s contact tracing efforts can be found on the Division of Public Health’s My Healthy Community data portal

Also available below is the Division of Public Health’s dashboard below.

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