KPTV file photo.

VANCOUVER, WA (KPTV) – Clark County Public Health on Tuesday reported an increase in confirmed cases of COVID-19 at Firestone Pacific Foods.

Washington state health officials said 84 cases of coronavirus were identified among employees at the fruit processing plant in Vancouver and their close contacts.

Firestone Pacific Foods on Monday reported that 65 employees had tested positive for coronavirus. The company said 87 employees tested negative and a few workers had not yet been tested.

As of Tuesday morning, 69 employees of Firestone Pacific Foods have tested positive for COVID-19, according to health officials. Of those 69, four are not Clark County residents. 15 people identified as close contacts of those cases have tested positive, according Clark County Public Health.

Public Health coordinated with The Vancouver Clinic and Firestone to facilitate COVID-19 testing of all employees. That testing began Friday afternoon.

A total of 165 employees and 83 close contacts have been tested. Additional testing of employees and close contacts is expected.

“The facility-wide testing of employees uncovered at least 18 people who tested positive but did not have symptoms at the time of their interview with Public Health,” according to health officials. “Information is not yet available about the number of close contacts who tested positive but did not have symptoms.”

The outbreak at the facility was discovered on May 17 when an employee tested positive for the coronavirus. The company shut down production and at the time it was unknown how many people had been infected.

Health officials on Tuesday said there is no evidence the outbreak has spread beyond Firestone employees and their close contacts.

Copyright 2020 KPTV-KPDX Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved.


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