Colorado is one of many states declaring a state of emergency in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Colorado Gov. Jared Polis made the announcement Tuesday. At a press conference, Polis said he hopes this step helps contain the spread of coronavirus in the state. The governor also said he expects the number of coronavirus cases to rise in Colorado.
Denver Mayor Michael Hancock announced that the state’s capital is under a local state of emergency as more coronavirus cases are confirmed. Sources say so far that there are nine confirmed cases of coronavirus in Denver. 22 others are also quarantined but show no symptoms. Containing the virus is a top priority as Denver houses more than 3 million people in its metropolitan area alone.
Colorado’s heightened response to the coronavirus outbreak comes just days after a plane traveling from Colorado to New Jersey made an unexpected stop at the Denver airport after passengers became upset over a sick passenger. Sources say a small group of passengers were disruptive after someone on the plane sneezed. Those passengers were later removed from the plane once it landed in Denver.
Sources say the person who sneezed on board simply had allergies, and showed no other symptoms of illness. It’s not clear if it was the weather, or something on the plane (like the carpet), that caused the person to sneeze. Allergens, stains, and odors build up in carpet over time, and it is important to have them professionally cleaned at least once a year in your home. On planes, they are cleaned more frequently.
While there are travel restrictions in place between the U.S. and Europe due to the rapid spread of coronavirus, airplanes still remain a safe mode of transportation. Globally, 1.25 million people die in road crashes each year. In comparison, there were only 287 air traffic fatalities in 2019. However, it’s important to note that air travel is still safe. The reason it’s currently restricted to certain areas of the world is to help stop the spread of coronavirus; it has nothing to do with overall aviation safety.
Colorado isn’t the only state to declare a state of emergency in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak. As of this writing, 23 states are under a state of emergency. These states include New York, Virginia, Washington, California, and Iowa. Counties and cities across the country are also declaring public health emergencies as coronavirus continues to spread.
Currently, there are more than 1,700 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the United States. So far, 41 people have died. The U.S. had its first confirmed coronavirus case back in February after a person in Washington state tested positive. Before that, it was in countries such as Italy, Iran, and China. The latest numbers show that there are 124,518 confirmed cases around the globe and more than 4,000 deaths. A majority of those cases and fatalities are from mainland China, where the first cases in this pandemic were reported in December 2019.
Symptoms of coronavirus include difficulty breathing, shortness of breath, fever, cough, blueish lips and/or face, and a runny nose. Some people may confuse these symptoms with symptoms of the common cold. The common cold is usually mild, with symptoms lasting one to two weeks. Coronavirus symptoms could last just as long.
If you believe you are displaying symptoms of coronavirus, you should stay home except when seeking medical care. If possible, isolate yourself from members of your household. Call your doctor ahead of time and tell them about your symptoms. If they want to test you for coronavirus, they will need to take precautionary steps.
There are preventative steps you can take to fight the spread of coronavirus. You should wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. It’s recommended that you clean high-touch surfaces frequently and avoid sharing items like dishes and cups with people. If you have any questions about coronavirus and its impact on your community, contact your local public health department.