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A team from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has arrived in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, to help with the hot spot of Smithfield Foods coronavirus, which has become the single largest source of cases in the United States.
Eighty of the 180 new COVID-19 cases from South Dakota are employees of the meat processing company, bringing the total to 518 Smithfield Foods employees who tested positive. There are also now 126 total cases of non-employees who became infected when they contacted an employee at Smithfield, according to the South Dakota Department of Health.
The 518 employees and 126 non-employees connected to Smithfield make it the largest cluster in the country (644), according to the New York Times. The previous upper group had 585 cases aboard USS Theodore Roosevelt in Guam.
Verification of the facts: Smithfield Foods does not sell meat that has been slaughtered and processed in China
Smithfield announced Sunday that it will close its Sioux Falls plant indefinitely on Wednesday. The plant has 3,700 employees.
Governor Kristi Noem said the state “aggressively tests” Smithfield workers and those in contact with them, and puts people in solitary confinement as soon as possible.
Supporters of the Michigan Conservative Coalition are protesting the extension of the state house arrest order at Capitol Hill in Lansing, Michigan on April 15.
A man stands outside a closed Modell store as retail sales plummet during the April 15 coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak in New York.
New Jersey police and health workers are seen on April 15 at a new saliva-based coronavirus (COVID-19) testing site in Edison, New Jersey.
Cars and trucks are parked at a lot of car dealerships Wednesday April 15 in Green Park, Missouri. Retail sales in the United States recorded a record decline in March, as auto sales fell 25.6% as the pandemic closed thousands of stores and buyers remained at home.
Dwayne Evans reads a book near his bed in a temporary men’s shelter managed by the Downtown Emergency Service Center (DESC) at the Seattle Center Exhibition Hall, currently with 75 beds spaced at least six feet apart, in Seattle, Washington on 15 April. The shelter had two positive cases of the disease, the two people being isolated and the other tests negative.
A cleaning crew tag hangs on the doors of the office of the Senate Majority Officer Mitch McConnell in the Empty US Capitol in Washington on April 15.
A Whole Foods Market employee stands at the entrance to assist buyers in Durham, North Carolina, April 15.
On April 15, in New Hyde Park, New York, Dr. Cory Baker disinfects a colleague at a ProHEALTH Care coronavirus test site.
A man in a mask stands in front of a Coachella poster on La Brea Avenue during the COVID-19 crisis on April 15 in Hollywood, California.
Employees of the Hillsborough County Dining Room prepare to distribute food April 15 in Brandon, Florida.
A sign saying “Keep This Far Apart”, to remind people of social distance, is seen in a park on April 15 in New York.
Asuncion Esquivel uses a sewing machine to stitch an isolation gown at the Goodwill South Florida facility for doctors working in hospitals April 15 in Miami, Florida.
People protest against excessive quarantine during the coronavirus pandemic in Lansing, Michigan on April 15.
The Durham Bull bronze statue in Durham, North Carolina was dressed in a makeshift surgical mask on April 15.
On April 15 in Orlando, Florida, health workers conduct coronavirus tests at a car test site.
A mural fresco reads “Stay at home, life is good” on April 14 in Los Angeles.
President Donald Trump answers questions during the daily briefing of the coronavirus task force at the Rose Garden at the White House in Washington, D.C., April 14.
Nurses gather for a candlelight vigil to honor health care workers at Lincoln Hospital in the Bronx on April 14.
A closed, snowy playground is empty during the lockout in Idaho Springs, Colorado on April 14.
Reuben Goodman, dressed in a Star Wars costume, dances outside his home on his 5th birthday while maintaining social distance in South Orange, New Jersey, April 14.
Firefighters gather to cheer for medical workers outside the Brooklyn Hospital Center on April 14 in New York City.
The Rocky statue is fitted with a false surgical mask at the Philadelphia Art Museum on April 14 in Philadelphia.
A girl, wearing a mask, walks a street on April 14 in New York.
Nurses and staff administrators hold signs and wait to greet and applaud nurses from across the country to help treat coronavirus patients at the Long Island Nursing Institute April 14 in New York City.
Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, left, wears a face mask to repel the coronavirus as she listens to Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer speak during a press conference to call FEMA to grant the approval of funeral aid in the event of a disaster to assist families in lower regions. Income and color communities in New York are paying funeral costs amid the coronavirus pandemic on April 14 in New York.
Protesters from a popular organization called REOPEN NC protest the locking of the North Carolina coronavirus in Raleigh, North Carolina on April 14. The group demanded that the state’s economy be opened by April 29.
Volunteers Ellen Mangum (L) and Claudia Zelidon cut, folded and wrapped surgical masks at Polar Shades Sun Control to help Las Vegas area healthcare workers and first responders fight coronavirus April 14 at Las Vegas, Nevada.
Deputy City Manager George Ellis packs okra at a food distribution site behind the wheel of Sherbondy Park April 14 in Opa-locka, Florida. Hundreds of people were lining up for fresh fruits and vegetables.
A sign instructing drivers to “avoid travel and stay at home” due to the spread of the coronavirus is posted on the I10 highway April 14 in Santa Monica, California.
President Donald Trump steps out of the podium as a White House video is released at a briefing on April 13 in Washington. Trump used the briefing to attack critics.
Family members and church members, wearing protective masks, practice social distancing as the coffin of the pastor of the bright star Freewill Bishop James N. Flowers Jr Baptist Church is laid at Harmony Cemetery at Seat Pleasant, Marylan on April 13.
Ocyress Delarosa drove an almost empty streetcar during rush hour in Minneapolis, Minn., April 13, 2020.
Jenzro Alonso, an employee of Via Emilia 9 restaurant, wears a protective mask when delivering freshly prepared meals to medical workers as part of the Frontline Foods Miami initiative in partnership with the non-profit organization World Central Kitchen by chef Jose Andres, April 13 in Miami Beach, Fla.
Bicycle deliverers stop on the street during the April 13 coronavirus pandemic in New York.
A patient arrives in an ambulance outside the NYU Langone Medical Center on April 13 in New York.
Medical staff are seen outside NYU Langone Health as people applaud to show their gratitude on April 13 in New York City.
Sarah Rivas, an employee at Annie’s Paramount Steakhouse in Washington, DC, is organizing the presentation of toilet paper and alcohol for takeout orders on April 13. races.
A person wearing a protective mask walks past the Robert Indiana sculpture “LOVE” at the John F. Kennedy Plaza in Philadelphia on April 13.
People walk with social distance on a rainy day on April 13 in New York.
Beds fill a structure in a coronavirus isolation and quarantine complex for the homeless on April 13 in Las Vegas.
The work of Lacey Gamble, a recently released employee at Disney World, displays messages and Disney characters she chalked on a sidewalk in front of her apartment as a request for unemployment benefit assistance April 13 in Windermere, Florida.
On April 13, in New York, street artist Robert John Burck, known as The Naked Cowboy, plays the guitar amid a coronavirus problem.
The pavement is washed inside the reopened municipal fish market after last week’s temporary closure during the coronavirus pandemic April 13 in Washington, D.C.
People play pickleball on an empty street during the Coronavirus pandemic April 13 in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Store employees work to store shelves in a ShopRite supermarket April 13 in Plainview, New York. Grocery stores and supermarkets on Long Island are busy balancing supply chains to meet growing consumer demand.
The United Airlines terminal is empty at San Francisco International Airport on April 12 in San Francisco, California. San Francisco International Airport has experienced a dramatic drop in daily flights since the installation of the Coronavirus shelter. United Airlines, the airport’s largest carrier with the most daily flights with 290 flights per day before the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, reduced its daily flights to 50 per day.
Firefighters applauded health care professionals who risk their lives to fight COVID-19 in New York on April 12.
The streets are empty due to the COVID-19 pandemic in New York on April 12.
Empty seats are seen during an Easter service at St. Patrick’s Cathedral as the coronavirus (COVID-19) epidemic continues in New York City’s Manhattan neighborhood on April 12.
Pastor Paul Marc Goulet prays people in their cars during an Easter service at Las Vegas International Church due to the coronavirus outbreak on Sunday April 12 in Las Vegas.
Peter Lando and family participate in Easter Mass broadcast live on television in their home from St. Mary’s Catholic Church in the midst of the Coronavirus Outbreak (COVID-19) in Carlisle, Massachusetts, April 12.
A man gestures as he wears rabbit ears and a face mask as he walks past St. Patrick’s Cathedral on April 12 in New York.
Social distance of the people who cross the center of transit of Oculus after the arrival of a train coming from New Jersey at Easter, April 12, in New York.
Pastor Paul Goulet runs an Easter service in a car amid the coronavirus pandemic at the International Church in Las Vegas on April 12.
Hashim, a vital worker in the health care industry, greets his daughter and nephew by the closed door as he maintains social distance with his family in New Rochelle, New Jersey, on April 11.
Felix and his mother Naomi Hassebroek watch his sister’s newborn through a glass door while dropping a bag of supplies in Brooklyn on April 11.
The CDC team is scheduled to visit the Smithfield plant on Thursday morning and create a checklist of items to complete before the plant reopens, Noem said at a press conference on Wednesday. Noem said she was working with federal officials and Smithfield executives to get the plant back online to ease pork producers and the food chain. Slideshow by photo services
Health Secretary Kim Malsam-Rysdon said he asked the CDC to hire occupational health experts to help the state understand the plight of Smithfield coronavirus and what the company can do to protect it its workers. Smithfield is cooperating with the state and they are looking forward to mitigation efforts so the plant can reopen, said Malsam-Rysdon.
Hot spots in the United States
Smithfield Foods meat packing plant; Sioux Falls, S.D. 644
Aboard the U.S. Theodore Roosevelt; Guam, 585
Cook County Jail; Chicago, 524
Parnall Correctional Institution; Jackson, Mich., 212
Soldiers’ House at Holyoke; Holyoke, Mass., 194
Source: The New York Times
This article originally appeared on Sioux Falls Argus Leader: Smithfield Foods in South Dakota is now the largest coronavirus hotspot in the United States.