Officials urge Memorial Day precautions

BATAVIA — As Phase 1 of the Finger Lakes Region’s reopening continues, area officials are again advising people to stick with social distancing.

The idea, they said, is to continue the area’s success, preventing further COVID-19 infections and keeping the GLOW region moving forward.

Six new cases COVID-19 cases were reported Wednesday in Genesee and Orleans counties. Wyoming and Livingston counties again reported none.

“As warmer weather arrives and the holiday weekend is upon us, we are urging all residents to remain vigilant and use precautions,” said Livingston County Administrator Ian M. Coyle. “Please continue to keep yourself and others safe by wearing masks and maintaining six feet of social distancing. Let’s work together to prevent the further spread of COVID-19 so we can move forward with future phases of reopening.”

As it stands, Genesee, Orleans and Wyoming counties are reporting 41 active coronavirus cases in the community, out of 424 total confirmed cases. The three counties as a whole have experienced 32 deaths.

In Livingston County, the total number of active cases was down to 10.

Genesee County reported four new COVID-19 cases on Wednesday for a total of 177. The people involved reside in Batavia and Le Roy, and are in their 30s, 40s, 50s and 80s.

Two of the new positive cases were in quarantine prior to becoming symptomatic, and two of the total positive cases are hospitalized.

Orleans County has two new positive cases for a total of 171. The new cases are from Ridgeway and Gaines, and are in their 30s and 40s.

Neither were in quarantine prior to becoming symptomatic. Of the total positive cases, 17 are in the hospital.

In Genesee County, the Buffalo Federal Detention Center has 49 positive cases while the Batavia VA Medical Center has two, neither of which involves any deaths. In Orleans County, the Villages of Orleans Health and Rehab has 87 cases and 22 deaths.

The Orchard Rehabilitation and Nursing Center has three cases while Western NY DDSO has six.

To date, Genesee County has 2,173 total negative cases, 14 cases in the community under mandatory isolation, 42 in the community under mandatory quarantine, four total deaths, and 108 in the community have recovered. Orleans County has 1288 total negative cases, 19 in the community under mandatory isolation, 77 in the community under mandatory quarantine, 23 total deaths, and 56 community recoveries.

It’s expected an uptick in positive cases and quarantines will occur as social interaction increase, county officials said in their daily update. If that happens, it will indicate people may be ignoring precautions such as social distancing, handwashing, wearing face coverings and not having gatherings of 10 or more people.

That can ultimately affect reopenings and spread COVID-19.

“The more socialization that occurs the higher risk of transmitting the virus, especially to those who are most vulnerable,” the officials said. “It is imperative we still restrict social/family gatherings until we are certain to have this under control and/or there is a vaccine.”

The number of cases and recoveries alike remained unchanged for the second day in a row Wednesday in Wyoming County.

The county reported 76 cases and 63 recoveries, as officials advise continued vigilance.

“As Memorial Day draws near, there is, unsurprisingly, a significant demand by people right now across New York and our neighboring counties to gather and enjoy each other’s company,” said Chairman Jerry Davis of the Board of Supervisors in his daily update. “While people should be able to have fun, facilities or events that attract hundreds of people from outside the region pose a significant public health danger as we try to carefully reopen. These places should be closed and events should continue to be postponed or cancelled until the threat of COVID-19 has subsided.”

Wyoming County’s current statistics include:

n A total of 26 cases have been confirmed in the northwest quadrant that includes Attica, Bennington, Orangeville and Sheldon. Two have been attributed to Attica Correctional Facility and 24 have recovered.

n Twenty-two cases have been confirmed in the northeast quadrant that includes Warsaw, Perry, Middlebury and Covington. Twelve of those have recovered and five have died.

n Fifteen cases have been confirmed in the southeast quadrant that includes Castile, Gainesville, Genesee Falls and Pike. All 15 have recovered.

n Thirteen cases have been confirmed in the southwest quadrant that includes Arcade, Eagle, Java and Wethersfield. Twelve have recovered.

The total of negative tests was 1,279. Other statistics on Tuesday included eight people in mandatory isolation; 14 in mandatory quarantine; none in precautionary quarantine.

The age breakdown included 17 people in their 20s; 15 people in their 40s; 13 people in their 60s; 10 people in their 50s; seven people each in their 30s and 70s; three people in their 80s; two people less than 20 years old; and two people in their 90s.

The number of COVID-19 cases in Livingston County remained steady at 109 on Wednesday, while the number of recovered cases increasing to 92.

With no new cases reported, and recoveries of three additional people — all in Avon — the number of active cases was down to 10.

Wednesday’s update marked the fourth time in eight days that Livingston County public health officials reported no new cases of COVID-19. In that span, there has been a total of eight new cases.

The Finger Lakes region, which includes Livingston County, is in the first phase of reopening that began May 15 and includes the industries of construction; agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting; retail trade which provides delivery, curbside, and in-store pickup service, manufacturing and wholesale trade. Drive-in movie theaters were also allowed to open.

Phase two of reopening would include professional services, retail, administrative support, real estate and rental and leasing. Additional guidance on specific businesses allowed to open is expected from the governor’s office as the region gets closer to phase two.

Nearly 2,600 Livingston County residents have been tested for the COVID-19 virus, including 93 on Tuesday. The results of the 2,567 tests include 2,458 negative tests and 109 positive tests, representing an infection rate of 4.2 percent.

On May 5, the infection rate was 6.7 percent and has been trending down, even as testing in Livingston County has increased, according to data from the county department of health.

(Includes reporting by Ben Beagle, Mallory Diefenbach and Matt Surtel)

Johnson Newspapers 7.1