CACHE COUNTY – Sheriff’s deputies don’t want to be a buzzkill, but they say they will break up large gatherings if they have to while the COVID-19 coronavirus keeps spreading. To that end, they broke up what would have been a large gathering with hundreds of high school students who wanted to get together over the weekend.
Officers got wind of the plan on social media. Someone was inviting kids to Sky View High School for a party and some games. Under normal circumstances, plans like this would be relatively harmless. However, Sheriff Chad Jensen says these are not normal circumstances.
“We’ve been given some direction on an unknown problem. We don’t know where this is going to go and we want everybody to be safe,” he said.
Deputies stopped large gathering before it started
The teens started arriving Friday night, reportedly in groups of six to ten per car. Deputies were on the scene and sent the kids away without issuing any citations.
“Over an hour or so period, probably 200 local high school kids were coming and going past the high school,” Jensen said.
The kids why the large gathering was unsafe
Most of the kids understood why they were being turned away. Jensen says he can empathize with students who are frustrated about being cooped up in their homes and away from their friends.
“We just want parents and we want the public [to know] that if you see these gathering on public places where we have closures to please call and let us know.
“Let’s just all be patient and work with each other until we know what the answer is,” Jensen said. “Think of what’s going on right now. We want [kids] to be safe. We want schools to be safe. Schools are closed, so they can’t be on school property.”
Given that COVID-19 continues to spread across the state, health officials say parties and large gatherings are an extremely bad idea. They say they want teens to think of their parents and grandparents before going out, and how they could possibly and accidentally infect someone they love by being around a lot of people.
(Contributing: Mike Anderson, KSL TV)
How To Prevent the Spread of COVID-19 Coronavirus
COVID-19 coronavirus is transmitted from person to person. It is a virus that is similar to the common cold and the flu. So, to prevent it from spreading:
- Wash hands frequently and thoroughly, with soap and water, for at least 20 seconds.
- Don’t touch your face.
- Keep children and those with compromised immune systems away from someone who is coughing or sneezing (in this instance, at least six feet)
- If there is an outbreak near you, practice social distancing (stay at home, instead of going to the movies, sports events, or other activities.)
- Get a flu shot.
Resources for more information
State of Utah: https://coronavirus.utah.gov/
Utah Coronavirus Information Line – 1-800-456-7707