GAGES LAKE, IL —The Lake County Health Department is investigating a coronavirus outbreak linked back to adult volleyball games held at a Gages Lake bar in September. As of Tuesday, 14 people who played or watched volleyball at Jesse Oaks Food & Drink in Gages Lake in September have tested positive for COVID-19, and health officials say nearly 200 players and spectators may have been exposed to the virus.
Of those who tested positive, several also played volleyball at other bar and restaurant locations, which could lead to the further spread of the virus, according to a news release from the Lake County Department of Health.
“We are currently working diligently to speak with infected individuals and notify close contacts who have been identified,” said Sana Ahmed, medical epidemiologist for the health department. “However, nearly 200 volleyball players and spectators may have been exposed. This could potentially be a large outbreak, and we need the public’s help to contain the spread of this virus.”
At this time, Jesse Oaks has suspended all volleyball activities for 14 days, and may only resume once in compliance with state guidelines after that time.
“Under the current phase of the State’s plan, volleyball is considered a medium risk sport, and no competitive matches between teams are permitted,” said Larry Mackey, director of environmental health at the health department. “Failing to abide by these guidelines puts the public’s health at risk, prolongs the pandemic, and has the potential to force additional restrictions on local businesses that are working so hard to protect their employees and customers.”
“We continue to address any complaints of facilities not following these guidelines and are working closely with business owners to help them operate safely. When businesses don’t cooperate, however, we have no choice but to pursue enforcement measures,” Mackey said.
There has been “some disagreement” over whether the games at Jesse Oaks went against state guidelines, the Daily Herald is reporting. Health officials believe the games were leagues games, which would not have been allowed under states rules, but no enforcement actions have been taken against Jesse Oaks, Mackey told the newspaper.
Meanwhile, the health department is urging anyone who played volleyball at Jesse Oaks in September to:
Health officials provided the following guidance for those who visited Jesse Oaks in September and did not wear a mask or consistently maintain a six feet distance from others:
During quarantine, a person should stay home, limit their contact with others in their home, avoid having any visitors, and wear a face covering if they must leave to seek medical attention. A negative test result does not shorten the 14-day quarantine period since the virus may take up to 14 days to be detectable by a COVID-19 test.
As of Tuesday, there have been 17,014 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Lake County and 466 deaths.
Coronavirus, Volleyball, Gages Lake, Jesse Oaks Food & Drink
World news – US – COVID-19 Outbreak Linked To Volleyball Games At Bar