Tips on how to stay safe and not spread COVID-19 on this Labor Day Weekend – Berkeleyside


Posted: September 8, 2020 at 10:00 pm

Bicycling along the new stretch of the Bay Trail would be a good and safe way to enjoy Labor Day. Here Richmond resident Maria Elena takes her first ride on the trail Photo: Pete Rosos

Using lessons learned from Memorial Day and Independence Day where social gatherings led to the spread of COVID-19, health officials are offering tips to the public on how to stay safe over Labor Day weekend.

Following celebratory events, contact tracing has shown that many people likely became sick with COVID-19 after attending a party or picnic with friends and family. A common theme found by contact tracers was that people attended these gatherings despite showing symptoms of COVID-19, such as coughing. There were also people who attended gatherings who didnt know they had COVID-19 because they didnt have any symptoms, but who later tested positive and infected others at the gathering.

We all miss spending time with friends and family, said Dr. Lisa B. Hernandez, the city of Berkeley health officer. But containing COVID-19 is a collective effort. The choices we make as individuals impact our whole community. We all need to do our part that includes wearing face coverings, physical distancing, and limiting in-person socializing.

Health officials discourage social gatherings with people who dont live in your home because these get-togethers, even small ones, increase the risk of spreading COVID-19. Health officials offer the following tips for a safer celebration:

Be extra cautious in the days before gathering with others: If you know youre going to meet with people from outside your household, stay home as much as possible and limit public activities in the days before in order to reduce the chance of getting sick and infecting others at the gathering.

The Labor Day weekend forecast predicts unseasonably warm temperatures. Smoke and ash from regional wildfires have created unhealthy air quality for many communities. Health officials warn to factor-in your local forecast when planning Labor Day activities. In many areas, the safest place to celebrate will be indoors, at home, among your household unit only.

Berkeley is also recommending that people limit their activities to lower their risks. For example, if you get your hair cut at a salon this week, you might not eat outdoors or a restaurant but decide to get take out or cook at home. You might not go to the grocery store.

Each activity adds risk, and by framing your activities in terms of trade offs, you can lower your risk level, Berkeley posted in a message on its website. For those over 60 years old or with underlying health conditions, choose fewer activities to more tightly manage your risk.

There are now more options at the buffet of activities, said Dr. Hernandez. But, in terms of physical proximity with others, COVID-19 still forces us on a distancing diet. Dont go for everything on the table.

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Tips on how to stay safe and not spread COVID-19 on this Labor Day Weekend - Berkeleyside

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