A cluster of coronavirus cases reported in Arkansas after a swim party

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This undated electron microscope image made available by the U.S. National Institutes of Health in February 2020 shows the Novel Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. Also known as 2019-nCoV, the virus causes COVID-19. The sample was isolated from a patient in the U.S. On Tuesday, April 21, 2020, U.S. health regulators OK’d the first coronavirus test that allows people to collect their own sample at home, a new approach that could help expand testing options in most states. The sample will still have to be shipped for processing back to LabCorp, which operates diagnostic labs throughout the U.S. (NIAID-RML via AP)

(CNN) — Several people who attended a high school swim party in Arkansas have contracted Covid-19Gov. Asa Hutchinson told reporters on Saturday.

“A high school swim party that I’m sure everybody thought was harmless. They’re young, they’re swimming, they’re just having activity and positive cases resulted from that,” Hutchinson said.

The governor declined to provide further details on the swim party but noted the incident was “just an encouragement for us to be disciplined in our activities.”

“During this Memorial (Day) weekend, we want to be out and we want to enjoy ourselves, we want to remember this holiday and those that have served our country and given their lives in service of our country. But let’s be safe and let’s be disciplined at the same time,” Hutchinson said.

The case described by the governor highlights the threats of community spread in the United States as cities and states continue relaxing social distancing measures and businesses reopen.

Earlier this month, at least 180 people were exposed to the novel coronavirus in California when a person who tested positive for Covid-19 attended a religious service on Mother’s Day. Meanwhile in Missouri, as many as 91 people were exposed to the virus when a hairstylist with coronavirus worked for eight days while symptomatic.

On Saturday, Hutchinson said Arkansas is seeing an increase of Covid-19 cases in what the governor calls a second peak.

Health officials reported 163 new cases of the virus on Saturday. There are at least 5,612 cases in the state, according to a tally by Johns Hopkins University.

Unlike other states, Arkansas has not been under a stay-at-home order to limit the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Last month, Hutchinson said he didn’t believe the state needed a statewide order because of its low density in population.

He pointed to his actions in declaring a public emergency when Arkansas had its first confirmed case of coronavirus, closing the state’s schools and increasing testing.

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