HONOLULU (KHON2) — With one week to go, Honolulu is on track to move into Tier 2 on Thursday, Oct. 22.
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If COVID-case numbers remain where they are–below an average of 100 and with a positivity rate of less than 5%–tattoo and massage parlors and gyms will be able to reopen again.
Five people will still be the maximum allowed at a restaurant table, however, diners will be able to go out to eat with friends and people outside their household unit.
Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell said that people need to remain vigilant as tourism reopens and schools slowly shift to in-class learning.
“Because of these things, we can see an increase in cases which is why we have to be extra careful right now,” he said.
As tourism reboots, Mayor Caldwell also announced that he will allow tour buses to operate at 50% occupancy with physical distancing in place. All passengers must wear a mask and provide contact tracing information.
On Thursday, he also announced that a new testing facility at the John A. Burns School of Medicine, which will be able to test 500 people per day and up to 100,000 people in one year.
“It’s free. You can come here starting Monday of next week and get a free COVID-19 test. If you have insurance, you can pay for it with insurance or walk-in and get tested,” Mayor Caldwell explained.
For now, the site will be used for underserved residents and first responders.
It’s not a testing site that offers a pre-test for inter-island travel, but officials said that they will ask to be on the state’s list of trusted partners.
Mayor Caldwell asked Lieutenant Governor Dr. Josh Green for more details regarding the state’s surveillance screening program, which would test 10% of arriving travelers four days after they arrive.
Mayor Caldwell sent a letter to Lt. Gov Green asking how the tests will be done at random.
“We still don’t have those details, as we open up,” Mayor Caldwell explained on Thursday. “We look forward to getting the results four days from now as to what the rate of positivity is for those who tested negative.”
Mayor Caldwell also has plans for a mobile lab at Daniel K. Inouye International Airport.
He hopes to test 10,000 people a day who didn’t do a pre-travel test. Those tests would yield a result within a few hours. He said the goal is to have it up and running by Nov. 1, but details are still being figured out.
“A couple things we’re looking at, you can get your pre-test to travel inter island because it’s quick,” he explained. “Other idea is if we do see through this random testing that the number of positives is higher than we feel comfortable with, perhaps Oahu would require everyone who got pre-test a voluntary or maybe mandatory test. We’ll have to see with no quarantine in between and this gives us that capacity.”
Mayor Caldwell has not sent an official proposal to Governor David Ige regarding the mobile lab at the airport.
The plan is to have the traveler pay for the test at the airport.
For more information regarding Honolulu’s coronavirus containment efforts, click here.
Watch the full press conference in the video player before:
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