Bermuda – Fifth person dies, lockdown extended to May 2

Premier of Bermuda, David Burt
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HAMILTON, Bermuda (CMC) — Bermuda Premier David Burt has announced that the 24-hour lockdown in Bermuda will be extended for a further two weeks until May 2.

Burt, who also announced the death of a fifth person from COVID-19, made the announcement at a news conference late Tuesday.

He said cabinet had decided to take the shelter-in-place regulations into next month on the advice of the public health emergency response team.

Burt added he was “keenly aware” of the impact that the extension, which will start on Saturday, would have on the way people lived and worked.

But he insisted: “As a people, we must make this sacrifice, a sacrifice which is based on compassion for those of us who will die if they contract COVID-19.”

Bermuda has so far had 57 confirmed cases of the virus. The fifth person to die was an elderly resident at a care home.

Among the 57 cases are a newly-wed couple — both in their 70s and now in hospital.

They caught the virus on a cruise ship, whose tour around South America and the Caribbean was aborted.

The 22 Bermuda residents on the ship, the Coral Princess, returned to the island from Miami last week aboard two private jets.

Burt said there would be modifications to the state-of-emergency regulations, including permission for trips to laundromats and to pick up office materials by people forced to work from home.

The premier also said that a small and medium-sized business relief package, created by the Bermuda Economic Development Corporation, would be revealed on Wednesday.

He said Finance Minister Curtis Dickinson would also outline measures to help economic recovery

“once we come out of this period of challenge”.

Meanwhile, four police officers are in quarantine after a man who claimed he had COVID-19 alleged coughed on them.

Commissioner of Police Stephen Corbishley said the man deliberately coughed on the officers after he was arrested on suspicion of drunk-driving and breach of shelter-in-place regulations.

“Two other officers also became concerned for their safety after the individual sustained an injury as he struggled with them while being processed at Hamilton Police Station.”

Corbishley said all four officers had been forced to go into a 14-day quarantine as a precaution, adding:

“Obviously this has an impact on them and their families, costs to police and government time, taking away resources from the front line.”

Among a number of persons arrested for breaking the curfew regulations was a man wearing an electronic monitoring device. Lawrence Smith, 22, pleaded guilty to three breaches of the regulations and was jailed for a month.

Other offenders have been fined up to US$3,000.

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