They Went to the Jersey Shore and Brought Back COVID

People take advantage of newly lowered COVID-19 protective restrictions in most of southwest Pennsylvania and have food and drinks on the sidewalk on the re-opening day for seated patrons at an eatery on Pittsburgh's Southside, Friday, June 5, 2020. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

By Associated Press

June 8, 2020

The Bucks County Department of Health said 12 coronavirus cases reported over the weekend were linked to a New Jersey resident who attended gatherings at beach houses at the Jersey Shore.

A dozen new coronavirus cases in the Philadelphia area have been traced to someone who attended gatherings at beach houses at the Jersey Shore, according to the health department in suburban Bucks County.

The department said 11 cases reported Saturday were linked to a New Jersey resident who was at gatherings in the past two weeks. One case reported Friday also was traced to the same person.

“There are likely to be additional infections among family members of the new cases,” said Dr. David Damsker, the health director in Bucks County.

He did not disclose further details, including exactly where the gatherings were.

“This is exactly why we can’t let our guard down now, even if it feels safe to be at the beach,” Damsker said. “One unlucky exposure can lead to a large cascade of cases down the line.”

Even as the state shifted towards reopening in recent weeks, Gov. Tom Wolf has warned Pennsylvanians against going to the beach. “There are people there who aren’t wearing masks and you’re putting yourself at risk,” Wolf said in May.

It is important to wear face coverings when attending small gatherings of people who are not members of the same household, Damsker said.

Nearly 5,000 residents of Bucks County, which borders Philadelphia to the south and New Jersey to the east, have tested positive for the coronavirus.

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