More warnings to avoid game day gatherings with more contagious variant confirmed

Coronavirus

HONOLULU (KHON2) — There are more concerns that Super Bowl Sunday could turn into a super-spreader event with a more contagious COVID variant now in Hawaii. Health and safety officials are urging everyone to avoid the temptation of getting together with those outside of their household.

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Officials advise keeping game day parties small when getting together with families and friends. Have the party outside or at least spend a good amount of time outside rather than staying indoors for several hours.

Super Sunday will be different from the previous years. City and health officials would prefer everyone to enjoy the big game at home, but if that is not possible, keep masks on and stay six feet apart. They added, try to eat and drink outside because masks must be taken off while doing so.

“The concern is with the Super Bowl being three and a half hours long, we really don’t want anybody being in a poor ventilation, in a crowded space. That’s really a potential for the transmission of COVID,” said Hiro Toiya, director of the Department of Emergency Management.

Toiya said, avoid eating buffet style and have individual servings instead. Go easy on the alcohol as well, because that leads to more risky behavior. There is growing hope that the pandemic could one day be over with thousands of people getting vaccinated every day in Hawaii, but Toiya points out that this is not the time yet to let our guard down.

“There’s still a significant portion of our population that haven’t gotten vaccinated yet, so we just got to keep up with the safe practices as we have been, specially in light of the potential variants being in our community,” he said.

The governor is asking everyone to just stay home and avoid the risks with at least one case of the U.K. variant now confirmed.

“Please do not attend Super Bowl parties this weekend. That can be a super spreader event clearly, unless you intend not to eat or drink or talk with people. Super Bowl can be enjoyed within your family unit,” said Gov. David Ige.

Oahu residents have done well in keeping the daily case counts and positivity rate down since the holiday surge. Since Hawaii is close to the possibility of going into Tier 3 with fewer restrictions, another surge would be a big step backwards.

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