HONOLULU (KHON2) — Mayor Kirk Caldwell said in a press conference on Oct. 8 that Oahu is just two weeks away from reaching Tier 2 of Oahu’s reopening process.
As of Oct. 8, Oahu is averaging about 70 cases a day with a 3% positivity rate.
Caldwell said if numbers remain the same, Oahu can move to Tier 2 by Oct. 22.
Under Tier 2, five people will be allowed at beaches, parks and restaurants, and are permitted to do other activities.
However, five people outside of a household will be able to eat at a restaurant, arcades will be allowed to open, helicopter tours will open at 50% occupancy, legal vacation rentals will be permitted, personal care services like massages can resume, tattoos and waxing will be allowed, and gyms will be allowed to re-open at 25% capacity.
“So starting now and if the positivity rate is below 5%, we move into Tier 2 and we can do a lot more things and loosen up [restrictions] even more,” Caldwell said.
In order to move into another tier, numbers have to remain consistent for four weeks straight.
The concern heading into Tier 2 for Honolulu is that visitors will be welcomed back the same time that some schools go back to in-class learning next week.
“So, we do expect, and Dr. Fauci said, we’ll see an uptick in cases, but if we bring down the numbers on Oahu that uptick won’t keep us out of Tier 2,” Caldwell explained.
He said to do that, residents must continue to wear masks, avoid large gatherings, keep a six-foot distance and wash their hands often. He said it is almost imperative for residents to remind others of the rules that are in place.
Mayor Caldwell said Oahu has learned from places like Tahiti, which saw a huge jump in cases even after they implemented a two-test system for visitors.
“We’re told that they opened up and it was one visitor who brought that virus in but it wasn’t just visitors…when they opened to visitors the Tahitians got more relaxed and thought okay, things are going back to the way it was before,” explained Caldwell.
Caldwell said it will be up to the Department of Health whether to add visitors to the daily case count.
Under CDC guidance, a visitor’s positive case should be counted in their home state.