Cache County Deputies Break Up Gathering Of 200 Teenagers
SMITHFIELD, Utah – Deputies with the Cache County Sheriff’s Office are trying to let teenagers know about the importance of good social distancing after breaking up a gathering of around 200 people at Sky View High School.
A resource officer saw the online post, which told teenagers from all over the county to meet up at high school and play some games.
Deputies were there waiting that night and said teenagers were arriving in groups of five to 10 per car.
“Because of what’s going on right now, we want them to be safe, we want the schools to be safe,” said Cache County Sheriff Chad Jensen. “Schools are closed, so they can’t be on the school property. So we had deputies waiting at the school and when the kids showed up, many of them were confronted and they dispersed.”
Jensen said it took deputies around an hour to break up the event of approximately 200 people and the teens were generally understanding about why they were there to do that.
“It stinks not having your senior year in high school and it stinks being home quarantined,” he said. “We understand that and we sympathize with that. But also we’ve been given some direction on an unknown problem, and we don’t know where this is going to go, and we just want everybody to be safe.”
Events like this are why officials with the Bear River Health Department said it’s important to have conversations with children and teenagers about the importance of social distancing.
“Talk a little bit more to make it personal with them, and say, ‘we realize that you’ve got a grandparent, or a grandmother or father, or maybe you have a friend or a cousin that might have an underlying health condition, that’s immunocompromised in some way,” said Lloyd Berentzen, director of the Bear River Health Department. “Then when we relate to them what the disease can do to those folks, it makes it a little more personal, when they realize they can actually bring that disease to them, unknowingly.”
Jensen said no citations were issued and they just wanted those at the gathering to get the message that we’re all in this together.
“I just think we live in a unique, challenging time. We’ll get through it,” added Berentzen.
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How Do I Prevent It?
The CDC has some simple recommendations, most of which are the same for preventing other respiratory illnesses or the flu:
- Avoid close contact with people who may be sick
- Avoid touching your face
- Stay home when you are sick
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue and then throw the tissue in the trash
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom, before eating, and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing. Always wash your hands with soap and water if your hands are visibly dirty.
- If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
The CDC does not recommend wearing a face mask respirator to protect yourself from coronavirus unless a healthcare professional recommends it.
How To Get Help
If you’re worried you may have COVID-19, you can contact the Utah Coronavirus Information Line at 1-800-456-7707 to speak to trained healthcare professionals. You can also use telehealth services through your healthcare providers.
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