A Fitchburg, Massachusetts church service has been linked to nearly 200 COVID-19 cases.
By Monday, the Crossroads Community Church was linked to about 30 positive cases of the virus. Days later, that number skyrocketed to 150.
Fitchburg has seen 1,126 confirmed cases of COVID-19 since the beginning of March, and 85 residents have died, according to an update from Mayor Stephen DiNatale’s Facebook page Saturday. Of that total, there are 176 confirmed active cases.
Here’s what we know about the case so far:
- A video posted to the church’s Facebook page shows very few attendees wearing masks or physically distancing from each other.
- City will be offering free testing this Tuesday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Many of those who have tested positive are asymptomatic, which makes it more difficult to contact trace.
- Contact tracers have also pointed to ice and deck hockey as a source of more than 40 confirmed cases, the Fitchburg Board of Health reported.
Church services have since been shut down as the number of positive cases has grown in recent days.
“They are bringing COVID to my neighborhood and I don’t like that,” Fitchburg resident Charlie Myers said. “I know what the reported cases are from the Boston area and what’s in Massachusetts they have out-of-state cars coming in here who’s going to track down New Hampshire?”