Thursday, 1 October 2020

Gov. Cuomo says nearly a quarter of New York's positive COVID-19 cases on Tuesday came from 20 hotspots largely in the NYC area

 New York Gov Andrew Cuomo said that nearly a quarter of New York state's positive COVID-19 cases on Wednesday came from 20 hotspots where cases have been spiking.

In a tweet, the governor shared a graphic showing the zip codes that have seen upticks in cases within the past 24 hours. 

'Almost a quarter of yesterday's positive cases were from just 20 hotspot ZIP codes,' Cuomo wrote. 

'We are targeting these clusters immediately to prevent community spread. If you live in one of these ZIP codes, treat this seriously. Wear a mask. Wash your hands often. Get tested,' he added.  

New York Gov Andrew Cuomo said Wednesday that nearly a quarter of New York state's positive COVID-19 cases came from 20 hotspots

New York Gov Andrew Cuomo said Wednesday that nearly a quarter of New York state's positive COVID-19 cases came from 20 hotspots 

'We are targeting these clusters immediately to prevent community spread. If you live in one of these ZIP codes, treat this seriously. Wear a mask. Wash your hands often. Get tested,' he said. This graphic depicts the 20 zip codes that Cuomo was referring to

'We are targeting these clusters immediately to prevent community spread. If you live in one of these ZIP codes, treat this seriously. Wear a mask. Wash your hands often. Get tested,' he said. This graphic depicts the 20 zip codes that Cuomo was referring to

Cuomo said in Wednesday's update that of the 97,960 tests reported on Tuesday, 1,000 were positive, making up about 1.02 per cent of the total. 

That brings the statewide total to 458,649 as officials report cases in 49 counties.

'We're dealing with the cluster situation. We've had clusters in the past stemming from factories, churches, bars and other locations,' Cuomo said in a statement. 

'Remember we started with New Rochelle, the first hotspot in the United States, which stemmed from someone who attended a religious gathering and then a wedding. 


'And that was the first super spreader event, so we're quite familiar with this, and when there's a cluster, we are very aggressive on it and we're oversampling in the clusters.

'We've deployed rapid testing machines. So you have two infection rates that you want to pay attention to: the statewide numbers and then the cluster numbers,' Cuomo added. 

Within the 20 hotspot zip codes, the average rate of positive tests is 5.5 per cent. 

The rate of positive tests for the remainder of New York state, not counting the top 20 zip codes, is 0.82 per cent. 

New York Governor Cuomo calls out NYPD for not wearing masks
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At the top of the listing Cuomo shared on Wednesday are Rockland and Kings counties. Cuomo cited Rockland County, a suburb with a large Orthodox Jewish population, as an area that has a 30 per cent rate

At the top of the listing Cuomo shared on Wednesday are Rockland and Kings counties. Cuomo cited Rockland County, a suburb with a large Orthodox Jewish population, as an area that has a 30 per cent rate

The surge is being driven by new cases in nine neighborhoods in Brooklyn and Queens; Gravesend/Homecrest, Midwood, Kew Gardens, Borough Park, Bensonhurst, Gerritsen Beach/Sheepshead Bay and Flatlands (depicted)

The surge is being driven by new cases in nine neighborhoods in Brooklyn and Queens; Gravesend/Homecrest, Midwood, Kew Gardens, Borough Park, Bensonhurst, Gerritsen Beach/Sheepshead Bay and Flatlands (depicted)

The rate of positive tests for all of New York state, including the top 20 zip codes, is 1.02 per cent. 

These 20 ZIP codes contained 23 per cent of all positive cases in New York state on Tuesday, but represent only 6 per cent of the state's population. 

Cuomo's tweet on Wednesday follows the release of a video showing crowds of Orthodox Jewish people gathering in the Borough Park neighborhood of Brooklyn. 

In the footage, dozens of people were seen walking closely together down a street in the Borough Park neighborhood of Brooklyn.

While some wore masks, others were seen without facial coverings and social distancing appeared to be nearly impossible for most of the individuals in the footage. The video is believed to have been recorded amid the Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur.

On Tuesday, Mayor Bill de Blasio said he would start imposing fines on anyone who does not wear a mask in public as the COVID-19 infection rate rose to 3.25 per cent for the first time since June. The maximum fine for refusing to wear a mask is $1,000.

The surge is being driven by new cases in nine neighborhoods in Brooklyn and Queens; Gravesend/Homecrest, Midwood, Kew Gardens, Borough Park, Bensonhurst, Gerritsen Beach/Sheepshead Bay and Flatlands. 

The highest infection rate based on a 14-day average that was released by de Blasio on Monday was in Borough Park, where the infection rate was 6.72 per cent. 

Crowd of Orthodox Jewish people gather in Brooklyn as Covid spikes
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Crowds of Orthodox Jewish people are seen gathering in New York City
. In the footage, dozens of people were seen walking closely together down a street in Brooklyn

Cuomo's tweet on Wednesday follows the release of a video showing crowds of Orthodox Jewish people gathering in the Borough Park neighborhood of Brooklyn. In the footage, dozens of people were seen walking closely together down a street in Brooklyn 

At the top of the listing Cuomo shared on Wednesday are Rockland and Kings counties. 

Cuomo cited Rockland County, a suburb with a large Orthodox Jewish population, as an area with a 30 per cent rate.

One zip code in the Gravesend section of Brooklyn has recorded more than 400 new coronavirus cases since September 1. 

By comparison, the Corona section of Queens, which was ground zero for the New York City outbreak in the spring, has seen just 62 new cases despite having a third more residents.

According to health officials, some of the new infections have been linked to Yom Kippur which ended on Monday.

Cuomo said he will meet virtually with Orthodox Jewish leaders and local elected officials from the communities most affected by the coronavirus to insist on the need to abide by the rules.

The increase in cases occurs in the same week that hundreds of thousands of children return to in-person school in New York City.

It also comes as restaurants and bars will begin allowing indoor dining at 25 per cent capacity for the first time since March starting Wednesday.

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