5 new cases Saturday; Tier 3 as early as December

LIHU‘E — Saturday, the state Department of Health Kaua‘i District Health Office reported five new travel-related COVID-19 cases — one adult resident and four adult visitors.

The county currently has 19 active cases, with one in the hospital and the rest in isolation.

Saturday marked the second day in a row the county reported five new cases. Friday, the county shared the results of two adult residents and three adult visitors, concluding that four were travel-related and one community spread. Thursday, the county reported four new cases.

With these cases, the county hit a seven-day average of 2.5 cases daily. The county reported a test positivity rate of 1.1% on Friday. These metrics are above the Kaua‘i Business and Recreational Guidelines for COVID-19 strategy Tier 4 threshold.

To move tiers, the county will need to sustain a daily week average of two and a positive rate of at least 1% for two weeks. The county is on track to move tiers by the first week of December.

Tier 3 of the Kaua‘i Business and Recreational Guidelines is defined as having a seven-day average of daily case count between two and four, and a test positivity rate between 1% and 2.49%. If the county were to hit this threshold, the biggest change would be restricting group gatherings.

Access to beaches, parks, golf courses and helicopter and commercial recreational boating are fully allowed. However, social gatherings go from 10 indoors and 25 outdoors to 10 both indoors and outdoors.

At a Tier 3 point, both indoor and outdoor sports gatherings are not allowed. Pick-up games that do not require permission or are associated with a formal league or association are allowed with social distancing and masks.

Faith-based services can continue at 50% capacity recommended.

Similar to Tier 4, gyms and fitness centers will continue at 50% capacity, but at this point, groups max out at 10.

Markets and craft fairs can continue through Tier 2.

The county has a cumulative case count of 109. Only 96 have been found locally, one probable case and 12 which were diagnosed elsewhere.

One of Saturday’s new cases had taken a pre-travel test but did not receive the positive result until after arrival. Starting Tuesday, the state will require travelers to have their negative COVID-19 test results in-hand prior to flying or face a 14-day quarantine per a new Safe Travels policy.

Saturday, DOH officials reported 163 new cases and seven deaths, all on O‘ahu. This brings the death toll to 231 across the state.

Of the new cases, 123 were on O‘ahu, 15 on Hawai‘i Island, 12 on Maui and four on Kaua‘i. County and state reports differ due to lags in reporting times.


Sabrina Bodon, public safety and government reporter, can be reached at 245-0441 or sbodon@thegardenisland.com.

  1. Michael November 22, 2020 4:34 am Reply

    The new rules imposed on travelers to Hawaii are a step in the right direction. A better step would be for the airlines to deny travelers boarding if there is either a positive test or no test results. In either of the two latter circumstances, even though a 14 day quarantine is to be imposed, it’s possible that the traveler is potentially exposing many people in the airports and plane during the journey. Protecting the public should be the number one priority.

  2. Wot Chufaka November 22, 2020 5:07 am Reply

    so you need a pre test negative, then 4 day quarantine and another test? so if we get 1000 per day incoming and on the second test we get 1 per day positive we still have a ineffective system. Thats 30 cases per month plus the spread which will lead to some challenges at Wilcox and KVMH. All thats going on is that our leaders are seeking the acceptable way to suck the nipple of tourism with an acceptable infection rate by beta testing on us. But it does not end there, we too are guilty , how many local folks made the paper violating quarantine? how bout that record producer at Anini? Its not possible to stop this folks, so dont get your hopes up, we will eventually match Lanai , people we know will die, others will have a cold, thats life, I hope you lived well. AS for the vaccine, once I see you did not grow a 3rd eye, I might get it, but I doubt it. Got as much faith in big Pharma as I do the county government, very little.

  3. Dr Jim November 22, 2020 6:04 am Reply

    How far do we have to go with this idiocy before we see that our testing program is no more effective than other islands (ie Tahiti) whose programs failed miserably.

    If we stopped travel completely now, and reinstituted a lockdown, we would still see our case numbers increase for 2 weeks. It will take 4 to 6 weeks for numbers to then fall back to where they are today. Do we really need to increase our burden of cases and community spread of disease further?

    How many more people do we need to entice to leave areas of high infection with a “negative test” just to arrive here with COVID? Large parts of the country are in various phases of restriction but we are letting them come here with no restrictions. This seems imprudent.

    New Zealand health officials have just documented a single presymptomatic COVID infected traveler infected 4 other passengers on a long flight with rigorous mask and glove requirements in place. In New Zealand all of these cases were caught by a 14 day quarantine preventing infections from entering the community. We aren’t even pretending to do that. Each person that shows up here either with a positive diagnosis either on arrival (suprise!) or diagnosed later has already had the opportunity to spread the disease further during the long transoceanic flights, before even interacting with the community.

    In the last month we have had almost as many (45 vs 59) cases on Kauai as we had in the first 7.5 months of the pandemic. We don’t need to wait 2 weeks to figure out where that “rolling average” is going.

    Opt out of the pretesting. If Governor Ige is committed to making his legacy the decimation of Hawaii by COVID, we cant control that. But our Mayor and Council do have the ability to protect this the island. Exercise that ability. I suspect that in short order the governor will approve a 7 day two test system which would drastically reduce but not eliminate infections from being introduced to the island. In the meantime we will be all the safer with the two week quarantine.

  4. Makaala November 22, 2020 7:11 am Reply

    This is ridiculous. If you don’t have a negative test result before traveling, the airlines should not allow them to travel.

  5. randy kansas November 22, 2020 8:14 am Reply

    would be interesting to see the “actual”cause of death on the certificates…..

  6. nobody November 22, 2020 8:15 am Reply

    Question: If the current average rate of new cases, (5 per day for the past 2 days), continues from now on, will we be in Tier 2 on December 1st?

    Anybody good at math and rules?

  7. Susan November 22, 2020 10:03 am Reply

    Can I be brutally honest? Tourists/travelers who are coming to Kauai right now knowing full well that they might be infected but still willing to risk spreading the virus into our community just so they can take a vacation are some of the worst scum.

    I have no aloha for these selfish, dangerous, disgusting people; they need to be confronted the moment they step off the airplane and made to feel unwelcome – because they are NOT welcome here.

  8. Craig November 22, 2020 10:54 am Reply

    These Teirs are a total joke. If you really want to keep our local residents Safe, get that second test at least 5 days after arrival..
    Quarantine till negative test results..
    No exceptions. If not these Teirs are all just smoke and mirrors that don’t help crap

  9. Numilalocal November 22, 2020 2:33 pm Reply

    If 95% of the population would wear a mask over nose and mouth, all of this could be avoided Ed. That’s
    what the science says.

  10. John Muni November 22, 2020 3:45 pm Reply

    Both the Saturday (5), and Sunday (4) positive cases will be immune and non-contagious after 2-3 weeks of their immune systems naturally developing specific antibodies against the Covid-19 virus.

    Then after the 2-3 weeks, each of them will be safe to themselves and to others, unless any one of them is at high risk then they should be closely watched and hospitalized if necessary.

    The positive cases should undergo at least 2 weeks of quarantine UNLESS they can prove by a positive test that they were infected and positive at least 2 weeks, and better 3 weeks, prior to their testing over the weekend.

    If the 9 or any one of them has been positive for 2 to 3 weeks they will have immunity to protect themselves and be be Non-contagious to protect those in the community.

    Though if any members of the community become infected, by these 9, if they are not high risk, they will also become immune and non-contagious after 2 or 3 weeks whether or not they have been tested or whether or not they have symptoms. This is the safe natural way to become immune and not Contagious

    That is also the safe way to take care of these 9 cases and protect the community as well.

  11. Charlie November 22, 2020 4:29 pm Reply

    Statistics show that year after year seasonal flu brings as many sick, as well as those with no symptoms, and mild symptoms, and amount of deaths of those at high risk at the same amount year after year. Covid19 is just another version different year.

    Scientists are saying it is important to actually get the flu each year, with or without test or symptoms each year as the natural immunity of those not vaccinated adds to their following year immunity and strength against subsequent years seasonal virus.

    Better to get the virus now than suffer worse or die next year.

  12. Hector Perez November 22, 2020 7:11 pm Reply

    I love Kaua’i. So I know the frail Kapuna could die easily if the test doesn’t pick up that I may be asymptomatic and I sneeze in at Safeway or Costco as I am buying my food. I pray for Kaua’i. Sending my aloha to Kaua’i from Kekaha to Ke’e. Love Unko Hector, da kine Art teacher from Detroit🤙🏽🙏🏽❤️🌈

  13. Hirondelle November 22, 2020 9:39 pm Reply

    Where are all these newly arrived visitors going to be quarantined? What will it cost each day (on top of the condo or house they’ve already rented) and what will the tests cost? If this information is published, seeing the stark reality of those extra costs might discourage tourists and lessen the risk for everyone.

  14. kauaidoug November 23, 2020 11:43 am Reply

    Folks, I am very concerned based what I saw and heard over the weekend. I went to a local restaurant for take out Saturday night and their parking lot that they share with another restaurant was full with no available parking spaces at all, choke. As I waited for my take out I went over and peeked in the window and inside I saw people at every table, no distancing and full! My jaw dropped. Locals and rentals in the parking lot.
    I heard about another private party held at another bar restaurant with drinking and few masks.
    So, in 2 days I witnessed 1 and heard of violations. My point is if this happened to me with my limited social interaction then I am afraid this is happening in other places. It is going to be hard to nip this virus in the bud here.
    I understand the plight of the restaurants but seeing what I saw I am not going to go over to my friends very small but outside Thanksgiving gathering because I have no confidence that there is not community spread. In fact our growing numbers is evidence of the behavior I witnessed. I felt I have a duty to report this to the county. I feel badly about it but we all have to do what we need to do. I did call the Mayor’s office and a Health worker and both urged a report. I hated to do it but…

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