Coronavirus Outbreak Infects 145 at Washington State Costco

Coronavirus Outbreak Infects 145 at Washington State Costco big box retailer costco (NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP via Getty Images)

By Theodore Bunker | Thursday, 31 December 2020 10:07 AM

An outbreak of the coronavirus has infected 145 employees at a Costco in Washington state, the Yakima Health District announced in a statement this week, according to The Hill.

“The Yakima Health District continues to investigate an outbreak of COVID-19 at Costco,” reads the statement, which was released on Tuesday. “After conducting site-wide testing, as recommended by YHD, there are now a total of 145 employees that have tested positive for COVID-19.”

KOMO News in Yakima notes that the store employees just under 400 people, 383 in total, and remains open.

“All 145 individuals that have tested positive are currently completing their isolation or quarantine period,” the statement continues. “After reviewing the number of cases, and the timeline in which they were identified, there is evidence to show that this sharp increase in cases mimics the type of activity that happens after some sort of superspreader event where multiple people are infected at the same time.”

Melissa Sixberry, director of disease control for Yakima County, added, “As Costco continues its site-wide testing, we anticipate the number of cases to continue to go up over the next few days as results are received.”

The county’s interim health officer, Dr. Larry Jecha, said, "COVID-19 activity levels continue to increase throughout the entire county. We need the help of the community to also follow the COVID-19 safety recommendations so we can keep work places safe, so we can keep schools safe, so we can keep each other safe by not overwhelming our health system.”