Health Officials Stress Distancing And Masks Ahead of Labor Day Holiday

CHARLOTTE, NC – Thousands of people are preparing for a long holiday weekend despite COVID19 concerns.  From lakes to highways and airports, crowds are expected and officials are pushing for distancing. 

The Mecklenburg county manager and healthcare workers warned people not to let their guard down during a Friday news conference. 

“Earlier this summer after both the memorial and 4th of July holidays, we saw significant spikes in the number of positive cases which took weeks to recover from,” said Dina Diorio, the Mecklenburg County Manager. 

While the percent positive is holding steady at 6.7% and hospitalizations are stable; doctors warn of an increase in young adults with the virus. 

“I saw patients last night who were in their 20’s who had covid in July or August and had recovered but were still having trouble breathing because of the scarring in their lungs. This is not a joke,” said Dr. David Calloway with Atrium health. 

Calloway stressed the importance of following state guidelines. 

“People are going to want to go out and have fun. By all means, do it. Do it smartly. Wear a mask, physically distance, wash your hands and look out for each other,” said Dr. Calloway. 

AAA is projecting a busy weekend for travel, but that people will stay closer to home. There will be increased patrols on highways during the 72 hour holiday. 

Lake traffic is expected to be heavy as well due not only to the holiday, but COVID

“It’s been busy every single week, every single weekend,” said Sampson Parker with the Wildlife Officer. 

At the airport, passengers can expect sanitizing stations, mask requirements, more cleaning, plexiglass at security and fewer lines. 

“It’s not nearly as busy as it typically would be. But it is busier than it has been and so that’s a good sign,” said Jack Christine. 

He’s the Chief Operating Officer at Charlotte Douglas Airport. He says they expect about 13000 people to fly today and Monday. That number is less than half compared to the same time last year. 

Christine says they’re keeping a close eye on what can be improved come november. 

“To help gage what we may need to do to keep everybody safe when they come through the airport to travel on the holidays,” said Christine.