(BIVN) – There have been 613 cases of COVID-19 identified in Hawaiʻi, an increase of 4 cases from yesterday.
The State and the County of Hawaiʻi agree that there are no newly identified cases of COVID-19 on the Big Island.
Kona McDonald’s Cluster Update
From the office of Kona’s State Senator Dru Kanuha:
As of Friday, April 24, in regard to the cluster of COVID-19 found in Kailua-Kona, a total of 37 positive cases with 3 McDonald’s were identified: 19 employees and 18 household members. DOH has reviewed McDonald’s social distancing measures established in its restaurants and has determined that customers would have been at low risk for spread from workers. As a precaution, DOH will continue to monitor for any new cases. Additionally, DOH investigations have determined employees of at least 2 locations had attended a farewell party in early April which is likely the major reason for spread of COVID-19 among so many workers from multiple locations.
On Monday, April 27, the Kona Commons McDonald’s has reopened and will maintain daily symptom screening of all workers as well as masking and appropriate social distancing. The other two locations – Kuakini Highway and Walmart – remain closed as they lack sufficient workers to reopen.
Governor Ige Posts New Video Message
In a new video address to state employees posted to YouTube on Wednesday, Governor David Ige said he is “currently working on a statewide reopening plan that will be based on facts, science and guidance from our health care advisors,” and said that Hawaiʻi “will be taking a phased approach to reopening.”
“My hope is that more measures will be relaxed before the end of May,” the governor said.
Police Report 35 Violations Of Stay-At-Home Order
Hawaiʻi Police say they continue to enforce the statewide stay-at-home order, “primarily in cases of non-compliance after verbal warnings or when in conjunction with unrelated calls for service.”
This past week, police say officers arrested 17 persons, and cited 18 persons, for a total of 35 violations. Police broke-down the violations by district as follows:
- South Hilo District: 11 persons arrested, 9 persons cited
- North Kohala: 2 persons arrested
- Kona District: 1 person arrested, 4 persons cited
- South Kohala District: 1 person arrested, 2 persons cited
- Puna District: 1 person arrested, 1 person cited
- Hāmākua: 1 person arrested
- Kaʻū District: 2 persons cited
Police say 4 of the 17 arrests were specific to visitors violating the 14-day travel self-quarantine (3 arrests in South Hilo and one arrest in Kona). Police said:
During this past week: Other unrelated criminal offenses, which prompted the police response and subsequent arrest of the suspects, involved Robbery, Unauthorized Control of Propelled Motor Vehicle (UCPV), Theft, Abuse Family Household Member, Disorderly Conduct, Criminal Property Damage, Criminal Tampering, and Operating a Vehicle Under the Influence of Intoxicants/DUI. Some of the behavior exhibited by violators to whom citations were issued consisted of disregarding repeated warning by police, traffic/motor vehicle offenses, congregating/loitering on/alongside the road, or at a park/beach area.
The Hawaii Police Department five-week combined total enforcement stands at 267 individual offenses (72 arrests, 186 citations issued, and 9 additional case.
Hawaiian Electric Extends Service Disconnection Moratorium
From the Hawaiian Electric company:
Hawaiian Electric has suspended service disconnections for nonpayment through June 30 to ensure customers’ electricity needs are met as stay-at-home orders are extended due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Customers should NOT worry about their power being shut off due to nonpayment through the end of June, and any threat of immediate disconnection unless payment is made received before June 30 should be treated as a scam. Customers experiencing financial hardship because of the pandemic are urged to contact Hawaiian Electric to discuss payment arrangements and options.
Hawaiian Electric is also continuing its modified operations on Oʻahu, Maui, and Hawaiʻi island to reduce the potential spread of COVID-19. That includes extending the closure of its walk-in payment centers through June 30, as well as the following updates:
- To ensure electric service is not disrupted, Hawaiian Electric has postponed projects and work that would require customer outages, unless it is deemed critical for safety or reliability. Emergency work, including outage restoration and repairs to ensure public safety such as replacing damaged poles, remains a priority.
- Meter reading has been scaled back since late March. While meters for commercial accounts are being read, bills for residential accounts may have been estimated based on the previous month’s usage. Plans call for resuming residential meter reading in the coming weeks, and residents are asked to please kokua and practice social distancing for the safety of our community and our employees. With most households adhering to stay-at-home orders, residential customer bills may be higher once their meters are read and bills reflect actual electricity usage.
- Customers who are having difficulty paying their electric bill are urged to contact Customer Service so payment options and schedules can be arranged to help keep payments manageable. While customers will still be responsible for paying their electric bills, payment schedules and other options can help ease the financial challenges for those most affected by the COVID-19 situation. The quickest way to start the process is to fill out and submit a Payment Arrangement Request Form at [this website].
- Households in need of utility payment assistance that meet the 60 percent state median gross annual income limit (individual, $30,767, and for a family of four, $59,167) may be eligible for up to $1,000 of LIHEAP COVID-19 Disaster Energy Crisis Intervention Assistance. Visit the appropriate agency website for more details: Honolulu Community Action Program (HCAP); Maui Economic Opportunity (MEO); or Hawaiʻi County Economic Opportunity Council (HCEOC).
- If you need assistance managing your energy costs during this time, Hawaiʻi Energy is a trusted resource for tips and rebates to help offset the costs of energy-saving equipment and services. For more information, please visit [this website] or call (808) 537-5577.
Hawaii Passenger Arrivals By Air (HTA)
Yesterday, 494 people arrived in Hawaii including 121 visitors and 177 residents. During this same time last year, nearly 30,000 passengers arrived in Hawaii daily, including residents and visitors. The state’s mandatory 14-day self-quarantine started on March 26th for all passengers arriving in Hawaii from out of state. The quarantine order was expanded on April 1st to include interisland travelers. This table shows the number of people who arrived by air from out of state yesterday and does not include interisland travel.
Crew = flight crew members
Intended Resident = people who are moving to Hawaii such as military members and their families, and former residents who intend to live in Hawaii
Resident = people who have a Hawaii ID
Transit = people who are in transit to another location through Hawaii and aren’t leaving the airport
Visitor = people who do not have a Hawaii ID including essential health care workers, essential federal workers, former residents such as mainland college students coming to stay with family, military on temporary assignment, and leisure travelers