Thanksgiving travel is expected to be down this year because of the pandemic. But the new government warnings come as many Americans have booked travel and accommodations for the holiday week and as many college students prepare to return home.
Forty-eight states — including Georgia — were listed in the red zone, or the most severe segment, for new cases in the most recent White House Coronavirus Task Force report, dated Sunday.
The task force report warned of asymptomatic and pre-symptomatic spread, particularly in social gatherings.
Georgia fared better in the report than all but three states in terms of the rate of new cases, but the trendlines are worrisome. The seven-day rolling average of new confirmed cases in Georgia has more than doubled since Oct. 2 and the rolling average of people currently hospitalized in the state is up by more than one-third since Oct. 12.
On Thursday, Georgia reported 2,735 net new cases of the coronavirus, 835 new probable cases as determined by rapid antigen tests and 40 confirmed deaths. To date, 396,641 confirmed cases of the disease have been diagnosed in Georgia, along with 40,515 probable cases determined by antigen tests and 8,569 deaths.
DPH recommends Georgians bring their own food, drinks, plates, cups and utensils if attending a gathering outside their home and to wear a mask when not eating. The guidance also suggested using single-use condiment packets and dressings and disposable food containers and dinnerware.
If hosting, DPH said it is safer to do so outdoors with a limited number of guests and to disinfect commonly touched surfaces between uses. If sharing food, the state suggests to have a designated server.
See the full list of recommendations on the CDC’s website at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/holidays/thanksgiving.html.