A new cluster of COVID-19 cases has been detected in Arkansas after a group of high school students had what they thought was a harmless pool party.
“A high school swim party that I’m sure everybody thought was harmless,” Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson said of the gathering, according to
Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson told the New York Post that though everybody likely thought the gathering was “harmless,” it was still a cautionary case.
“They’re young, they’re swimming, they’re just having activity and positive cases resulted from that,” Hutchinson continued. He didn’t reveal how many people had tested positive. He added that the kids’ negligence about their health is “just an encouragement for us to be disciplined in our activities.”
“During this Memorial (Day) weekend, we want to be out and we want to enjoy ourselves, we want to remember this holiday and those that have served our country and given their lives in service of our country,” he said. “But let’s be safe and let’s be disciplined at the same time.”
Other cases of social gatherings have shown that people are returning to pools as the weather warms up and disregarding social distancing guidelines. A video clip from the weekend shows a pool partying happening in Houston, Texas—and two others reveal a swim gathering in the Lake of the Ozarks, though it’s unclear if it was the same party or two separate ones.
According to Hutchinson, Arkansas’ small outbreak is part of a “second peak” of infections in the state. As the pandemic worsened, the state didn’t go into full lockdown mode. While the governor closed schools, there were no stay-at-home mandates for residents. Additionally, 38 people at a rural church in the state became infected earlier this month from two people who tested positive, resulting in three people dying.
Sadly, with other places opening up and parties popping up all over social media — we expect to see a bunch of outbreaks triggered over the next few weeks. Protect yourselves.