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Indoor sports can be superspreader events, CDC says

An ice hockey game led to multiple infections during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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This is March 11, 2005, file photo showing the American Airlines Arena in Miami.

This is March 11, 2005, file photo showing the American Airlines Arena in Miami.

AP

Indoor sports games can become superspreader events for thenovel coronavirus, according to a new weekly report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

  • Researchers pointed to a Florida hockey game, where a player infected as many as 14 people in the spring.

What happened:

The game occurred at an indoor ice rink in Tampa. A player experienced COVID-19 symptoms the day after. He tested positive two days later, CNNreported.

  • Each team had 11 players who were between 19 and 53 years old.
  • Each team had separate locker rooms.
  • No one worth face masks.
  • “During the five days after the game, 15 persons experienced signs and symptoms compatible with coronavirus disease 2019; 13 of the 15 ill persons had positive laboratory test results indicating infection with SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19,” according to the CDC.

Interesting note: Sixty-two percent of players experienced COVID-19 symptoms. No referees did. Nor did any spectators.

Why it matters:

  • The CDC said a “high proportion of infections that occurred in this outbreak provides evidence for SARS-CoV-2 transmission during an indoor sporting activity where intense physical activity is occurring.”
  • Isolation and quarantine are required after an event like this, the CDC said.