LOCAL NEWS: Pacific Seafood and Warrenton Hammond Schools close in response to workplace outbreak.
by Joanne Rideout
Pacific Seafood in Warrenton is closed today, after 77 employees there were diagnosed with COVID-19. Warrenton Hammond Schools have also shut down in response to the workplace outbreak.
Pacific Seafood General Manager John King said in a statement today that 160 seafood workers had been tested so far. According to the company statement, none had shown signs of illness.
Now the company is conducting more testing. King said, “Out of an abundance of caution and to provide peace of mind for our team members, we have made the choice to expand testing to all workers at the plant.”
As a result, 140 more workers will be tested today and tomorrow. The company is working with the Oregon Health Authority and other agencies to complete testing.
Then, in response to the outbreak, Warrenton Hammond School District today made the decision to close district schools, since some plant workers are residents of the local community. The statement said that while none of the cases had yet been traced to school campuses, contact tracing is underway.
Schools will be closed to in-person instruction and all in-person activities as of Friday. This includes all after school activities, sports practices and all Warrenton Prep programs.
All instruction will be done through distance learning for the time being.
All Warrenton Hammond school district campuses, offices, and facilities will be closed through at least Friday, October 9th.
The school district will evaluate the situation as it develops, with updates on whether closure will extend beyond October 9th.