New Jersey could reverse its reopening course if the coronavirus worsens there following the recent spike in cases.
The state added 699 new COVID-19 cases Friday, bringing its total to 181,660. Meanwhile, the death toll rose by 10, bringing the total of residents killed by the virus to 13,944.
“We still may be among the leaders in having the lower case numbers … but we are standing in a very dangerous place. The alarms are going off.” Gov. Phil Murphy said, according to a CBS2 report. “We are not past this. Everyone who walks around refusing to wear a mask, or who hosts an indoor house party, or who overstuffs a boat is directly contributing to these increases.”
The move comes at the same time the Sussex County Department of Health said it is examining a new cluster of infections, the report noted. Six teenagers in the area, between the ages of 17 and 18, tested positive for the virus. Five live in Sussex County and one in a nearby area, with each attending a recent graduation party.
New Jersey’s COVID-19 transmission rate rose to 1.35 in the last week and could continue to climb as new data pours in, Murphy said.
The governor explained that while the limit on indoor gatherings remains at either 100 people or 25 percent capacity, it could be lowered if cases continue to spike.