Whiteside County warns of soaring COVID-19 cases, possible exposure on Halloween

Local News

Whiteside County Health Department has issued an alert that customers at a Morrison, Ill., bar have been exposed to COVID-19, a press release says.

A potential exposure took place the night of Oct. 31 at Hero’s Bar & Grill, Morrison, after 10 p.m.

A symptomatic person, who later tested positive, reported visiting the night of Oct. 31 during their infectious period.

“Unfortunately, a number of individuals are not doing what they can to protect our community, first responders, healthcare systems, employers and schools,” the release says. “Instead they have chosen to disregard recommendations around masking, social distancing, staying home when sick, as well as ​Phase 4 Guidelines​ and ​Tier 2 Resurgence Mitigation.”

Exposure and cases continue in schools, workplaces, social gatherings and other locations in the community.

Whiteside County is seeing the highest COVID-19 burden this year with no indication of improvement, the release says: “Every interaction carries risk​, however, if you are going to a location where ​Phase 4​ and ​Resurgence Mitigation guidelines are not being followed, whether it is your place of employment, friend’s house, bar or restaurant, wedding, funeral, or other social event, you are putting yourself, your family, our kids’ in-person education, our local businesses, our first responders, EMS, healthcare systems and our most vulnerable at greater risk.”

Whiteside County and Region 1 entered Tier 1 Resurgence Mitigations Oct. 3 because of rising positivity rates and an increase in cases and hospitalizations.

Region 1 and Whiteside County became the ​first region​ to implement ​Tier 2 Resurgence Mitigation​ on Oct. 25.

Exposures and new cases continue to strain local businesses, schools, first responders, EMS systems, long-term care facilities and hospitals, “causing them to deal with increased cases as they work to prepare for influenza season, all while dealing with staffing shortages due to employees becoming ill or having to quarantine after an exposure.”

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