BERKELEY, Calif. (KGO) -- COVID-19 cases in Berkeley are soaring, much of the sudden spike attributable to what appears to be a major outbreak among workers at Golden Gate Fields horse racing track, which is now shut down.
More than 200 people living or working at the racetrack have tested positive, an official told ABC7 Saturday morning. This is accounts for half of the 400 that live there.
The track has suspended all live racing through the end of November.
"City of Berkeley Public Health continues to work closely with Golden Gate Fields on a significant outbreak where more than 200 people living or working on-site at the racetrack have tested positive for COVID-19. 1/ST Racing, which operates the track, is following all of the City's recommendations for testing, quarantine and isolation," a city spokesperson said in a statement to ABC7.
Management says all facilities have undergone a thorough cleaning as they work with the Berkeley Public Health Department to get things under control.
The vast stable area just south of the track is home to more than 1,000 horses and 400 people according to the Multi-Cultural Institute in Berkeley.
They say groomers and trainers live in crowded conditions there and they're not surprised to learn that the outbreak is centered among them.
"They are the caretakers to the horses," said Director Mirna Cervantes. "They live above the stables and you can see them as you're driving past on the freeway. They are a very vulnerable population that hasn't taken advantage or had access to the services provided by organizations like ourselves or the city of Berkeley."
See the tracker below to find out how COVID-19 cases are trending in your county.
App users: For a better experience, click here to view the full trend tracker in a new window
Outside the gates to the stable area, a loudspeaker blared a warning at lunchtime Friday afternoon.
"It is of extreme importance that everyone follows social distancing guidelines."
The Jockeys Guild said none of the 25 jockeys at the track have tested positive at this point.
But they added they are very concerned about the closure. No races equal no income.
If you have a question or comment about the coronavirus pandemic, submit yours via the form below or here.
Get the latest news, information and videos about the novel coronavirus pandemic here
RELATED STORIES & VIDEOS:
- Map: CA counties that can, can't reopen under new rules
- COVID-19 risk calculator: The safest and most dangerous things to do this holiday season
- Want to get a COVID-19 test in time for the holidays? Here's what you need to know
- Updated number of COVID-19 deaths, cases in Bay Area
- Map shows everywhere you can get a COVID-19 test in the Bay Area
- COVID-19 Diaries: Personal stories of Bay Area residents during pandemic
- California EDD: The most commonly asked questions we get about unemployment and PUA
- Health experts urge flu shots in effort to avoid 'twindemic'
- How to tell the difference between seasonal allergies and coronavirus symptoms
- Here's which mask is better to protect from COVID-19
- First COVID-19 vaccine volunteers in US describe experience as Bay Area launches vaccine trials
- Coronavirus origin: Where did COVID-19 come from?
- What is a COVID-19 genetic, antigen and antibody test?
- What will it take to get a COVID-19 vaccine and how will it be made?
- What does COVID-19 do to your body and why does it spread so easily?
- Here's how shelter in place, stay at home orders can slow spread of COVID-19
- Coronavirus Timeline: Tracking major moments of COVID-19 pandemic in San Francisco Bay Area
- Coronavirus Doctor's Note: Dr. Alok Patel gives his insight into COVID-19 pandemic