Update: In the meantime it has been clarified that 260 airport employees didn’t actually all test positive for coronavirus at once, despite Florida’s governor claiming that was the case. This clarification came after I wrote my initial post.
The airport has now clarified that there have been a total of 260 confirmed cases among airport employees and traceable connections to airport employees since mid-March, which is obviously a very different story. During the most recent test of 500 airport employees, only two tested positive.
I’ll leave the original post up rather than deleting it altogether so that hopefully this false news isn’t spread further.
— Orlando International Airport (@MCO) June 17, 2020
Florida is continuing to see the number of cases of coronavirus grow, as the state reported 2,780 new cases on Tuesday, which is the most cases reported in the state in a single day since the pandemic started.
Florida has been testing over 30,000 people per day for the month of June, and on average 5.5% of those people have tested positive. Generally more testing would lead to a lower percentage of those people getting tested having the virus, but in Florida it has actually gone up in recent weeks.
With this, Florida has more than 80,100 confirmed positive cases of COVID-19, with 2,993 people having died from coronavirus.
However, perhaps the most shocking statistic is what happened at Orlando Airport — 260 workers at Orlando International Airport have tested positive for coronavirus, after nearly 500 employees were tested.
In other words, over half of employees tested had coronavirus, which is an alarming rate. The reason for testing so many employees was due to contact tracing, as employees working in close proximity were all tested after there was one positive test result.
It’s not known exactly what functions these airport employees had.
As Florida Governor Ron DeSantis describes this:
“[An] Airport in Central Florida had a couple of cases, they did the contract tracing. They looked [at] almost 500 workers [and] 260 people working close together were positive, 52 percent positivity rate on that one.”
All of this comes as Orlando is already welcoming back tourists, with Universal Orlando already open, and Disney World expected to start a phased reopening as of July 11, 2020.