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Record number of positive COVID-19 tests in Seminole County due to lab dump, leaders say

County not requiring people to wear face masks

Record number of positive COVID-19 tests in Seminole County due to lab dump, leaders say
Record number of positive COVID-19 tests in Seminole County due to lab dump, leaders say

SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla. – Seminole County officials announced Friday they are not requiring people to wear face masks in public after the mayor of neighboring Orange County signed an executive order mandating face coverings.

Seminole County Emergency Manager Alan Harris discussed the latest on COVID-19 during a Facebook live on Friday. He said they are not requiring people wear face masks, but instead highly encouraging it.

"We wanted to do public education and information. We were hoping just seeing the numbers that more people may be interested in supporting the community by wearing facial masks and coverings," Harris said.

The county saw its largest number of positive tests in a day. Harris said they reported 121 positive cases in the last 24 hours. However, Harris said that number is not completely representative of a one-day total.

"What happened was a lab pushed all of their test results at the exact same time. Instead of them coming in, tricking in over a three day period, they dumped them all at the same time," he said.

Last week county leaders said they were almost at zero new cases, but Harris said the number of positive cases are rising and it’s not because more tests are being done.

"What we're seeing is the percentage of individuals that are being tested are coming back more positive," Harris said.

Harris said most of the positive cases are connected to bars and restaurants. He said many owners admitted their staff weren’t wearing facial coverings.

The county is rolling out its new campaign, "Help Yourself, Help Your Neighbors," to encourage everyone to wear face masks, practice social distancing, and washing their hands.

Seminole County is hosting pop up testing sites next week starting Monday at 9 a.m. at Winter Springs High School. Click here for additional sites and for more information.


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