Archive | August 24, 2020

New findings warn of higher risk in airborne coronavirus transmissions | COVID-19 Special #coronavirus #COVID19 #pandemic


MAGNITUDE 3.0 CANARY ISLANDS, SPAIN REGION #earthquake #CanaryIslands #Spain

Subject to change

Depth: 35 km

Distances: 206 km SW of La Laguna, Spain / pop: 150,000 / local time: 17:44:35.8 2020-08-24

33 km WSW of Valverde, Spain / pop: 5,000 / local time: 17:44:35.8 2020-08-24

Regional view

100 children in Ireland test positive for virus in last two weeks #COVID19 #coronavirus #Ireland #pandemic

Coronavirus Alert

The Chair of the NPHET Epidemiological Modelling Advisory Group has said that 100 children, aged between five and 14, have tested positive for Covid-19 in Ireland in the last two weeks.

Professor Philip Nolan said that these are “in the context of household outbreaks”.

Speaking on RTÉ’s This Week programme, he said there will be Covid-19 clusters in schools, but it is likely such cases will have been contracted at home, rather than in schools themselves.

Prof Nolan said it was a very anxious time for parents and teachers, adding that we know a lot more about the virus now than we did in March.

He said he could offer “a great deal of assurance” to people that the virus would not spread from schools back home to vulnerable people.

He said there is very little evidence internationally that schools are a major site of transmission or spread of Covid-19. He said children can get the disease, but they are contracting it more so at home than elsewhere.

“We will see cases in students and cases in teachers and clusters in schools, but when we see that, we need to think carefully and look carefully, because it remains unlikely when we see that,” he said.

He added: “If, for instance, there are two children in the same school with Covid in two months’ time, it is much more likely that those two kids have separately got it within their own households, rather than transmitting from child to child within the school.”

He said Germany was a good example, where cases confirmed in schools stemmed from children contracting the virus in a home setting.

In almost all of those German cases, it was quite certain that the virus was acquired at home, he said.

Prof Nolan said he does not think the dinner event in Galway has particularly hindered NPHET’s capacity to relay public health guidance, and echoed Acting Chief Medical Officer Dr Ronan Glynn saying that public anger would not stop the virus from spreading.

He said the core advice was that adults needed to stop congregating in large gatherings. He said such large gatherings were the core concern for NPHET.

He said everyone knows the difference between a crowded setting and a carefully managed classroom. He said people needed to use their common sense in that the virus transmits through sustained close contact.

Prof Nolan said his fundamental appeal was that people needed to avoid crowded settings, as that will quench the virus, and allow people to return to some normality.

Yesterday, an additional 156 cases of Covid-19 and two further deaths were reported to the Department of Health.

There has now been a total of 1,777 coronavirus-related deaths here and 27,908 cases. This includes the denotification of one death and three cases.

Of the cases notified yesterday, 68 are confirmed to be associated with outbreaks or are close contacts of a confirmed case while 15 cases are from community transmission.

Courtesy of

Usain Bolt ‘tests positive for covid’ – At a party with no masks or social distancing in Jamaica ‘ England star Raheem Sterling’ at party too #COVID19 #coronavirus #Jamaica #UsainBolt #RaheemSterling #Caribbean

Coronavirus Alert

Usain Bolt has tested positive for coronavirus just days after partying with guests including England star Raheem Sterling for his 34th birthday in Jamaica, according to reports in the country.

Nationwide90fm, a radio station in Jamaica, reports that the greatest sprinter of all time has contracted the disease and will spend time in self-isolation as a result.

The publication says Bolt took a test for the virus a few days ago following his party on Friday last week, and discovered on Sunday that he had tested positive.

Bolt was honoured with a surprise birthday party on August 21 which was attended by a host of big names.

Manchester City star Sterling, Bayer Leverkusen attacker Leon Bailey and cricket legend Chris Gayle are believed to have been in attendance.

Sterling’s season finished on August 15 when City were knocked out of the Champions League, and the team have been granted a delayed start to the 2020/21 season because of their European involvement.

Footage from the party showed Bolt laughing and dancing with his guests and even taking the microphone while speakers blared out an Adele song at the outdoor bash.

The guests also danced to the song Lockdown which was produced by Jamaican reggae singer Koffee in reference to the pandemic.

Eight-time Olympic gold medallist Bolt hailed it as the ‘best birthday ever’ in an Instagram post featuring a sweet picture of Bolt and his baby daughter Olympia.

It is not clear whether Bolt is suffering any symptoms of the disease but local media said he would ‘proceed into isolation’.

Bolt would be one of the most prominent sportsmen in the world to contract the coronavirus, after tennis star Novak Djokovic tested positive in June and American major sports leagues were disrupted by bouts of the disease.

Jamaica has recorded a total of 1,413 cases of coronavirus and 16 deaths from the disease, with infections soaring in recent days.

After recording just 174 cases throughout the whole of July, Jamaica has seen 267 infections in just the last four days.

The Caribbean nation avoided going into the kind of widespread lockdown seen in Europe at the height of the pandemic, but did shut borders to foreign arrivals in May.

Borders were reopened in June, but travellers have to show a negative coronavirus test result in order to board the plane.

Travellers are then tested again upon arrival, and quarantined for 14 days if it comes back positive.

Overnight curfews are in place from 11pm until 5am, face masks are mandatory in public places, while gatherings of more than 20 people are not permitted.

On Saturday, prime minister Andrew Holness warned of a recent surge in cases and urged Jamaicans to ‘exercise greater vigilance’ to prevent the spread.

‘There is a need for consciousness… for conscious personal responsibility on the part of every citizen,’ he said.

Speaking a day after Bolt’s birthday, the PM said people should avoid gathering in groups of more than 20.

The Caribbean island’s chief medical officer Jacquiline Bisasor-McKenzie said ‘parties and night club activities’ were linked to the recent spike.

‘What we are seeing is that many persons do not perceive a threat to themselves. They believe that it happens to somebody else,’ she warned.

The management for Bolt have been contacted for comment.

Courtesy of

MAGNITUDE 4.9 MALAWI, AFRICA #earthquake #Malawi #Africa

Subject to change

Depth: 2 km

Distances: 71 km NE of Mzuzu, Malawi / pop: 175,000 / local time: 09:03:47.6 2020-08-24

13 km S of Liuli, Tanzania / pop: 13,100 / local time: 10:03:47.6 2020-08-24

Regional view