The statewide transmission rate rose to 1.35 last week following a spike in new COVID-19 cases, according to Murphy, who said that number would likely continue to grow at as new data comes in.
PLUS: Concern Grows In New Jersey After Thousands Of New COVID-19 Cases Are Reported; A “match waiting to hit the powder keg”
“We didn’t get past that,” Murphy said. “Anyone who walks around refusing to wear a mask, or throws a party indoors, or overloads a boat directly contributes to these increases.”
Watch Governor Murphy’s July 31 briefing here:
The Sussex County Health Department, meanwhile, said it was investigating a new cluster of infections, CBS2’s Alice Gainer reported on Friday.
Six teens have tested positive for COVID-19. Five live in Sussex County, one in another. The teens are between 17 and 18 years old and have all attended a graduation party. Health officials said contact tracing identified 24 people who had come into close contact with them.
Series of tests earlier this week revealed more than 2,000 new cases, including dozens of Jersey Shore rescuers who attended social gatherings.
Murphy said the limit for indoor gatherings remains at 100 people or 25% of capacity – whichever is lower. But, he said, the limits could be lowered if the situation worsens.
“I’m not announcing any specific action today, but take this as notice,” Murphy said. “We will no longer tolerate these nonchalant and nonchalant attitudes.”
Airbnb recently suspended or removed 35 listings from New Jersey that received complaints or violated parties’ policies.
RELATED STORY: More than 50 Middletown teens tested positive for coronavirus after string of indoor parties, says Murphy
“We have seen a clear shift towards younger people who are less chronically ill,” said Dr Dan Varga, chief medical officer of Hackensack Meridian Health.
“While we are convinced that the likelihood of young people actually dying from COVID is probably very, very, very low, as long as more people are infected they are vectors of this disease to people who could die very easily. “, he said.
Watch Alice Gainer’s report:
With all hospitals in the system stockpiling supplies in the event of a resurgence, Dr Varga said others can do something to help prevent it.
“I think what young people really need to know is that you wear the mask so as not to protect yourself. You wear the mask to protect others. Said Dr Varga. “It’s an act of kindness.”
The governor reported 699 new cases of COVID-19 on Friday, bringing the total to 181,660 statewide. New Jersey’s coronavirus death toll increased by 10, totaling 13,944.
Murphy said the latest data showed no hospital deaths in a 24-hour period for the first time since March 10.
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News that cases are on the rise has left local business owners fearful of the worst.
Dinners were enjoyed Friday night under the stars on the rooftop terrace of Biagio’s Ristorante in Paramus.
For co-owner Tommy Perides it’s good to be open, but now he’s worried it won’t last.
“It’s the fear of going back to how it was in March, where it all ended,” he told CBS2’s Nick Caloway.
Perides had hoped to have meals indoors weeks ago, but the surge in crates strongly opposes this.
House parties and bunches irritate small business owners whose livelihoods are at stake.
“It’s disappointing to see just a bunch of kids taking no responsibility for themselves, for their families, and for the people they might be associated with,” Perides said.
Steve Goodman owns the Mr. Geez Bistro in Lyndhurst.
“It makes me angry when so many real businessmen and everyday people try to beat this stuff and do the right things, and it’s just a few crazy people,” he said.
Goodman opened just seven months before the pandemic and says the company won’t survive another shutdown, so he’s begging people to take this seriously.
“It’s not brain surgery. We can understand this, but we have to do it together, ”he said.
Good news was reported on Friday. New Jersey remains among the top 10 states in the country with the lowest number of active cases per capita.