Coronavirus Cases Down, Orange, Rockland Near End Of Red Zones

Lanning Taliaferro
·4 min read

HUDSON VALLEY, NY — The decline in new coronavirus cases in micro-clusters in Rockland and Orange counties could lead to a loosening of red-zone restrictions there soon — but not yet, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Wednesday.

The red zone designations in those two counties would be removed if the micro-cluster shows a positive test rate of less than 3 percent after 10 days of restrictions. The yellow zone restrictions would end if the positivity rate is less than 1.5 percent after 10 days. Other essential metrics: hospitalizations dropping and increased enforcement and compliance.

In Brooklyn and Queens, where positivity rates were not as high two weeks ago, several red zones have been downgraded to yellow.

"What this shows is that it's working," Cuomo said.

Coronavirus rates are dropping in New York's micro-clusters.(Source: New York State Health Department)
Coronavirus rates are dropping in New York's micro-clusters.(Source: New York State Health Department)

Meanwhile, Orange and Rockland red zones will remain, he said, because while significant progress has been made, it's not enough.

(Source: New York State Health Department)
(Source: New York State Health Department)
(Source: New York State Health Department)
(Source: New York State Health Department)

Still, the new guidelines are encouraging, local officials said.

"We are making hard-fought progress here in Rockland," said County Executive Ed Day. "The enforcement actions taken by our Department of Health and the personnel we, the Town of Ramapo and Village of Spring Valley have contributed to the New York State Police Enforcement Task Force are making it clear that we all expect strict compliance with the Governor’s Executive Orders and Cluster Zone restrictions.

"I spoke with members of the Governor’s staff before his press conference this morning and appreciate their outreach ahead of the updates he announced. It is clear that if our residents and businesses abide by these restrictions and continue to take the preventative actions necessary, we will soon reach the metric required to exit a Red Zone."

Meanwhile, as of Tuesday, the Rockland County Department of Health had received 44 complaints about 33 separate locations. Inspectors had completed nine inspections. On six of these inspections there was found to be no cause or violation at the time of the inspection.

Citations were issued to:

  • United Talmudical Academy - 89 S Main Street, Monsey. The inspector observed at least 60 children exiting the school and boarding school buses; estimated less than 20 of them were wearing masks/face coverings AND observed at least 6 adults, only 2 of whom were wearing masks/face coverings.

  • Ohr Chaim Learning Center - 18-20 Forshay Road, Monsey. The inspector observed about 25 men standing in front of the learning center; none were wearing masks/face coverings; the inspector saw additional people entering and exiting tents located in rear of property; none were wearing masks/face coverings.

  • Congregation Vien of Monsey - Bnos Vien - 70 Highview Road, Monsey. The inspector observed about 20 9-10-year-old girls sitting at desks in a classroom; none were wearing masks/face coverings; the desks were about 3-4 ft apart. The inspector saw a second group of 8 to 10 6-7-year-old girls standing at the windows looking out, none wearing masks/face coverings, standing 1-2 ft apart.

County health officials are still receiving complaints and inspections are still being conducted.

In Rockland County, two more COVID-19 deaths were announced Tuesday.

Daily data monitoring enables the State to identify areas that are experiencing a concerning increase in COVID spread. Once an area meets certain metrics - detailed below - that demonstrate substantial COVID spread, it may be designated a focus zone: a Red "Micro-Cluster Zone" (with accompanying Orange and/or Yellow buffer zones) or an Orange Warning Zone (with potential for accompanying Yellow Buffer Zone) or solely a Yellow Precautionary Zone. In densely populated urban areas, two buffer zones - an Orange Buffer Zone and a Yellow Buffer Zone may be required.

  • Red Zone — Micro-Cluster: A "Red Zone" focus area is put in place to contain spread from a specific, defined geographic area.

  • Orange Zone — Warning/Buffer: An Orange Zone area either is put in place primarily in densely populated urban areas as a tight buffer zone around a Red Zone micro-cluster ("Orange Buffer Zone") area OR is implemented independently as a focus area based on the below metrics ("Orange Warning Zone"). The purpose of an Orange Buffer Zone is to 1) restrict activity to prevent further spread from Red Zone area; 2) provide a defined geographic area where metrics can be monitored daily to ensure COVID is not spreading beyond the Red Zone.

  • Yellow Zone — Precautionary/Buffer: A "Yellow Zone" area either is put in place as a broader buffer area to ensure COVID outbreak is not spreading into the broader community ("Yellow Buffer Zone") OR is implemented independently based on the below metrics ("Yellow Precautionary Zone"). The purpose of a Yellow Buffer Zone is to 1) restrict some activity to help prevent further spread from Red and/or Orange Warning Zone area; 2) provide a larger defined geographic area where metrics can be monitored daily to ensure COVID is not spreading beyond the Red Zone or Orange Warning Zone. hukiy


This article originally appeared on the New City Patch