Friday, March 20, 2020

Coronavirus In Laredo: Timeline

The United States and South Korea each reported their first confirmed case of the coronavirus to the World Health Organization on Jan. 20. (The News Tribune)

Read more here:

February 26, 2020: Dr. Hector Gonzalez states that no confirmed cases of Covid-19 exist in our community.

Sunday, March 1:  LMT headline: Webb County officials say they are prepared for coronavirus. 

Tuesday, March 3: No plans for closures.  Dr. Hector Gonzalez: But at this time it is acting like a seasonal cold-like virus. 
Texas primary election: Super Tuesday

Wednesday, March 4, 2020: Health department staff members meet with LISD nurses.
Covid-19 hotline is set up by health department.
Robert Eads is selected as Laredo City Manager.  

Friday, March 6: No testing kits available locally. 

Sunday, March 8: city leaders travel to Washington, D.C. as part of their yearly jaunt.
LMT story: Jorge Vela quoted Dr. Hector Gonzalez: He pointed out that this is due to the fact that COVID-19 is no worse than the regular virus that causes the common cold and that 80% of people don't have symptoms and quickly recover. Therefore, large amounts of medical supplies are not needed. 

Monday, March 9: Texas Department of State Health Services present information to county commissioners regarding Covid 19. Attention is given to jail facility.

Wednesday, March 11: Tom Hanks and wife Rita Wilson quarantined in Australia after testing positive for Covid 19.  NBA season is suspended.
The World Health Organization declares Covid-19 a pandemic
City officials hosted "Laredo Day" in Washington, D.C.
City of Laredo officials: No state of emergency and therefore, there is no need for community-wide social distancing.
Grocery stores are seeing a run on: water, toilet paper, Clorox and anti-bacterial soap. 

Thursday, March 12: UISD statement: Family self-reported that they recently travelled to a European country.
2 patients at Doctors Hospital in isolation tested for Covid-19.

Friday, March 13: LISD teachers send extra work home with students, in case that Spring Break is extended.
Laredo spelling bee postponed.
Laredo College extends Spring Break one more week, until March 27, 2020.
City of Laredo: no confirmed cases of Covid-19; city events canceled for 30 days.
UISD cancels practices, the use of open courts, fields, weight rooms.

Saturday, March 14: The Tecolotes Dos Laredo's suspend preseason games, postpone regular season.
HEB stores close at 8:00 p.m.

Sunday, March 15: Announcement is made by city officials that 2 patients at Doctors Hospital tested negative for Covid 19.

Monday, March 16: First case of Covid 19 is confirmed by health department.  Person had not travelled to any hotspot areas.  Infection was classified as community-acquired.
TX-DOT announces that employees will start working remotely, starting on Monday.
Emergency declaration is announced by city and county officials.  The emergency management plan is set in motion.

Tuesday, March 17: City council convenes an emergency meeting. They vote on a 2-week lockdown. Residents are encouraged to stay home; grocery stores, pharmacies and doctors offices are allowed to stay open.
Facilities that are ordered to close are: bars, bingos, 8-liner joints and entertainment facilities.

Wednesday, March 18: Outlet stores remain open but foot traffic is minimal.
El Cenizo orders a lockdown.
Diocese of Laredo cancels services.
Laredo Police Department headquarters is closed for visitors.
Sheriff's downtown office limits visitors who want to pick up information, reports.
Rio Bravo issues lockdown order.

Thursday, March 19: County judge signs emergency order, restricts gatherings of more than 10 people.
City of Laredo launched text alert app for Laredoans to get Covid 19 updates.

Friday, March 20: Three people tested positive for Covid 19, bringing the total to 4, according to city officials.
The bridges didn't close, but non-essential travel was prohibited.

Saturday, March 21: parks were closed at noon to discourage groups of people from congregating.
Regular unleaded: $1.77 per gallon in south Laredo.
Laredo Federal Credit Union to be open only Monday thru Friday.

Monday, March 23: Schools started Grab & Go meals, providing food for students.
Two more people test positive for CoronaVirus, bringing total to 6.

Tuesday, March 24: City officials report 3 new confirmed cases, bringing total up to 9.
[persons #1 & #2 were co-workers at Hillside Rec. Center; person #2 is teacher at Dovalina Elem.; person #3 CBP agent; person #4 is co-worker of person #1 at Zaffirini Elem.]  
Mexican Consulate in Laredo suspends community activities.

Wednesday, March 25: Total confirmed Covid 19 cases is up to 13.

Friday, March 27: city reported a total of 22 positive cases. 

Saturday, March 28: at 12:01 a.m. shelter in place order to start, with partial curfew.
Laredo Times: Laredo officials deny report of death of a coronavirus patient at LMC. 

Sunday, March 29: 1st death from Covid-19 is reported in Laredo.

Monday, March 30: School districts extend break until April 24, 2020.  
LMT business section: Local restaurants battle to stay open under emergency order that allows only takeout.
City reports 37 positive cases of Covid-19.

Tuesday, March 31: Second death from Covid-19 is reported.
Governor orders schools to remain closed until May 4, 2020.  Only essential services to remain open.
City of Laredo holds meeting, installs curfew for all citizens from 10:00 p.m. to 5:00 a.m. and people should wear a face covering when going to public places. 

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