The number of people tested positive for the new coronaviruses in Paterson increased by 248 to 3,383 while the number of fatalities increased by 2 to 113 on Wednesday, according to municipal government data.
The increase marks the second biggest daily tally since the outbreak was first reported on March 16. Largest daily increase of 262 infections was reported on April 16.
Municipal officials returned to reporting verified local health department numbers on Wednesday. The previous day, the city’s Covid-19 dashboard reported unverified Passaic County case numbers for Paterson that contained invalid, duplicate, and wrong jurisdiction cases because of a faux controversy over mismatch of county and city data on infections fanned by council president Maritza Davila.
Passaic County’s dashboard lists data for its 16 municipalities from the state’s communicable disease reporting and surveillance system. The surveillance system showed 3,548 infections in Paterson. Each of the cases have to be investigated by the local health department. Often, some cases placed under one municipality belongs to another. Health officer Paul Persaud on Monday night told City Council members the local numbers are the most accurate.
Paterson has the biggest outbreak of the virus in Passaic County. Clifton has the second biggest outbreak with 1,591 infections and 59 deaths. Passaic County has 9,392 infections with 327 deaths. Overall, New Jersey had 95,865 with 5,063 fatalities on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, mayor Andre Sayegh, who revealed he had the virus on April 7, has recovered and returned to work on Wednesday morning. His staff has said police have been breaking up large groups of people gathering in the streets amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Police dispersed crowds who were not practicing social distancing at nine locations on Tuesday:
- Rosa Parks Boulevard and Keen Street
- 12th Avenue and East 22nd Street
- 17th Avenue and East 28th Street
- 16th Avenue and Carroll Street
- Broadway and Summer Street
- Pennington Street and Market Street
- Governor Street and Carroll Street
- Broadway and Lake Street
- Broadway and East 18th Street.
Police issued 52 summonses. 43 for blocking of public passage. 5 for blocking businesses. And 4 for failing to exercise social distancing.
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