More results from state-run testing for the novel coronavirus continue to come in, and as a result, the tri-state is seeing the number of confirmed cases increase exponentially with each passing day

What to Know

  • The number of novel coronavirus cases in the tri-state area nearly quadrupled between between late Friday and Tuesday, from 49 cases to 190; New Jersey has reported its first death
  • The state of New York has more than 170 cases and is the 2nd most impacted state in the U.S. next to Washington state; the lion’s share of those cases are in Westchester County
  • Governors in New York and New Jersey have declared states of emergency; Connecticut has two presumptive positive cases

New Jersey has reported its first COVID-19-related death — a 69-year-old man from Bergen County — as New York unveils its most stringent measures yet to combat the surge in coronavirus cases in Westchester County.

The Little Ferry man hasn’t been identified but health officials said he has underlying conditions including emphysema, hypertension and diabetes. He has no travel nexus to high-risk countries but did work in New York.

He initially survived one cardiac arrest but went into cardiac arrest for a second time Tuesday. The second time he could not be revived. He is among the now 15 presumptive positive cases in the Garden State.

“Our prayers are with the family during this difficult time,” Gov. Phil Murphy and Lt. Gov. Sheila Oliver said in a joint statement. “We remain vigilant to doing all we can — across all levels of government — to protect the people of New Jersey.”

Both New Jersey and New York have declared states of emergencies.

In New York, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the most rigorous actions to date to combat the spread in New Rochelle, which he described as the “most significant cluster in the country” and accounts for the lion’s share of the surging caseload in the tri-state area.

Those measures include deploying National Guard troops to a Health Department command post and setting up a satellite testing facility and one-mile, two-week containment area in the city. Public schools in that containment zone will be closed through March 25; National Guard troops will help clean surfaces and deliver food in that one-mile radius.

As of Tuesday, Westchester County has seen 108 confirmed COVID-19 cases; that’s 57 percent of all tri-state cases. See how the tri-state case count breaks down.

Gov. Cuomo unveiled the most stringent containment measures to date for New Rochelle

New Rochelle is home to the midtown Manhattan lawyer who has been linked to dozens of cases across multiple states. He was the second confirmed case in New York and its first instance of community spread. Learn more about the cases and track the spread of COVID-19 in the tri-state here.

There have since been fresh instances of community spread, including in New York City, which Cuomo said added more than a dozen new cases overnight. Overall, the state of New York sits at 173 confirmed cases, trailing only Washington state (179) as America’s most impacted state.

Meanwhile, school closings, community event cancellations and other fallout from the virus are expanding as officials work to contain the spread.

Asked Tuesday whether New York City’s iconic St. Patrick’s Day Parade, scheduled for next week should be canceled out of caution, Cuomo said officials are still assessing the situation. But it’s possible.

“You calibrate your response to the time and the facts and the circumstances in that place at that time,” Cuomo said on CNN. “So parades, etc. we look at that on a daily basis.”

Cuomo said even more people need to be tested — and they will be. The CDC has authorized six private labs in the New York area to conduct testing. By default, that enhanced testing ability leads to a boom in positives, local leaders have said. But as public anxiety swells, more communities, schools and companies are taking aggressive precautionary measures. See the latest school closures for New York and New Jersey.

Mayor Bill de Blasio reiterated Tuesday the guidance he has given since the city reported its first case on March 1: Wash your hands, use hand sanitizer, cover your mouth if you cough and don’t visit people who are sick, particularly if you’re older or have underlying health conditions.

“Transmission is not that easy. There has been a misperception that coronavirus hangs in the air, watching to catch you. No. It takes direct person-to-person contact, direct transmission of fluids,” the mayor said Tuesday. “Our schools are running. We’ve said, even if, God forbid, we found a case in a school, we’re not shutting down all our schools.”

A 7-year-old Bronx girl with no known nexus to travel or pre-existing conditions was added to the city’s case total Monday, likely the youngest patient here to date, as was an FDNY EMS member in Brooklyn — the first confirmed COVID-19 case among first responders.

The city has issued new guidelines for commuters, including suggesting people telecommute and avoid crowded trains if possible. The U.S. State Department has cautioned against cruises, particularly for people who have underlying health concerns. New York is making its own hand sanitizer. Starting Tuesday night, the United Nations closes to the general public and suspends tours until further notice.

Local governments are implementing changes — some major, some minor — that may impact the daily lives of people who will never get COVID-19. Here’s a breakdown of what’s happening in that regard by state.