Trinity County now joins most of the state of California in the most restrictive COVID-19 tier (purple), due to local, regional and statewide increases in confirmed infections.
“We are sounding the alarm,” Gov. Gavin Newsom said Monday morning. “California is experiencing the fastest increase in cases we have seen yet — faster than what we experienced at the outset of the pandemic or even this summer. The spread of COVID-19, if left unchecked, could quickly overwhelm our health care system and lead to catastrophic outcomes. That is why we are pulling an emergency brake in the Blueprint for a Safer Economy.”
California Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly said time is of the essence in responding to the surge in COVID-19 numbers statewide.
A release from the Governor’s Office Monday said the rate of growth in confirmed COVID-19 cases is faster than it was in July, which led to a significant peak in cases.
“This requires a swift public health response and action from all Californians to slow the spread of the virus,” it stated. “Immediate action will help protect individuals at higher risk of severe illness or death from COVID-19 and will help keep the state’s health care delivery system from becoming overwhelmed.”
“Personal decisions are critical,” Ghaly said, “and I am imploring every Californian to stay home if they can, wear a mask whenever they leave their homes, limit mixing, practice physical distancing and wash their hands.”
As of Monday, 41 counties, including Trinity, were bumped into the top tier, totaling 94 percent of the state’s population.
“Every county in California is assigned to a tier based on its test positivity and adjusted case rate. At a minimum, counties must remain in a tier for at least 3 weeks before moving forward. Data is reviewed weekly and tiers are updated on Tuesdays,” the state’s website states. “To move forward, a county must meet the next tier’s criteria for two consecutive weeks. If a county’s metrics worsen for two consecutive weeks, it will be assigned a more restrictive tier.”
With the county and most of the state currently in the most restrictive tier, it’s unknown when cases will drop enough to begin lifting restrictions again.
Trinity’s shift from a minimal infection rate (yellow) a couple weeks ago to a widespread infection rate (purple), puts new restrictions on some county businesses, namely restaurants, bars and wineries. According to the state website, restaurants can only serve outdoors with modifications, and bars, breweries and distilleries (not serving food) are ordered closed. Banks and essential services are to remain open, with modifications. Churches are allowed to have outdoor services with modifications.
Tiers and information about all California counties can be found at https://covid19.ca.gov/safer-economy/
According to the Trinity County COVID dashboard, positive cases jumped from 43 last week to 62 as of Thursday, Nov. 12. By the following day, cases jumped to 65 in the morning and up to 68 by 4:30 p.m. and 15 more were added over the weekend.
The county was aware of 31 active cases as of Monday. One person remains hospitalized, 31 are in isolation and 99 are currently in quarantine.
Trinity County made the jump from yellow to orange on Nov. 11 and skipped the red tier entirely Monday to be placed in the purple tier.
According to Johns Hopkins University, California has 1,032,095 confirmed cases and 18,262 deaths. In total, more than 21 million people have been tested.
West Coast states act
In a travel advisory issued Friday, Nov. 13, Gov. Newsom, joined by Washington Gov. Jay Inslee and Oregon Gov. Kate Brown, urged people returning to West Coast states from others voluntarily quarantine for 14 days.
“California just surpassed a sobering threshold – one million COVID-19 cases – with no signs of the virus slowing down,” said Newsom. “Increased cases are adding pressure on our hospital systems and threatening the lives of seniors, essential workers and vulnerable Californians. Travel increases the risk of spreading COVID-19, and we must all collectively increase our efforts at this time to keep the virus at bay and save lives.”
Along with quarantine recommendation, the governors also urged people to limit exposure to their own families and those in their households. Gov. Brown noted that the virus doesn’t stop at state lines.
“As hospitals across the West are stretched to capacity, we must take steps to ensure travelers are not bringing this disease home with them,” she said. “If you do not need to travel, you shouldn’t. This will be hard, especially with Thanksgiving around the corner. But the best way to keep your family safe is to stay close to home.”
“COVID cases have doubled in Washington over the past two weeks. This puts our state in as dangerous a position today as we were in March,” said Gov. Inslee. “Limiting and reducing travel is one way to reduce the further spread of the disease. I am happy to partner with California and Oregon in this effort to help protect lives up and down the West Coast.”
Due to Trinity County now being placed in California’s most restrictive tier for COVID-19, Jake Jackson Museum, History Center, and Gift Shop will be closed. Although museum officials remain hopeful, it is unlikely that they will open their doors again before the end of the year. Watch their website, trinitymuseum.org, or their Facebook page for updates. To purchase gifts for the holidays such as the annual Trinity Yearbook, calendar, or Christmas ornament, call, email or send a message through Facebook (see below).
Receptionist Angela Brownlee will do everything possible to see that you are able to get what you need before Christmas. Keep your eyes open for changes in the gift shop windows. Museum workers will be altering displays so that you can quite literally “window shop.”
Lastly, check out the books and ornaments for sale through their website.
Phone: 623-5211 or 623-5103;
Facebook: Jake Jackson Museum or Trinity County Historical Society.