San Bernardino County officials unclear on extent of COVID-19 spread after holiday weekend

San Bernardino County health officials say it could be 10 to 14 days before they find out the extent that Independence Day gatherings had on the spread of COVID-19.
SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. (KABC) -- San Bernardino County health officials say it could be 10 to 14 days before they find out the extent that Independence Day gatherings had on the spread of COVID-19.

Although many professional fireworks displays were canceled because local officials feared they would attract large numbers of people, it's unclear what recent COVID-19 restrictions had on smaller, family-oriented gatherings.

"We won't know for seven to 10 days whether we will have an uptick in COVID-19 from this weekend," said San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors Chairman Curt Hagman. "I expect we will have some, but I'm hoping not as much as we could have."

Hagman said from informal conversations he had with friends and family members, most people "were planning to scale down but not completely eliminate festivities on the Fourth of July."

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"I think in some cases by limiting some of the bigger events, we may have forced people into that element of letting their guard down because they're around people they know," Hagman said.

San Bernardino County health officials saw their largest day of new cases on July 4, but point out that it's mostly because of a backlog with not only data collection, but getting test results as well. The previous high was 753 new cases on June 30. On July 4 there were 1,024 cases reported.

"Sometimes (the data) come in batches like that where we'll get all the numbers in one day for a few days in which they didn't complete all the testing," Hagman said. "We are having issues with our data, and we are having issues getting the supplies we need almost like at the beginning of (the pandemic)."
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