Town Covid-19 cases remain low through August

Sep 1, 2020

As the number of coronavirus cases surpassed six million nationwide at the end of August, new Dartmouth cases have remained low through the summer with just four in the week ending Aug. 28, according to data provided by the town’s board of health. 

This is down from 11 new cases the week before. The town has now seen 451 confirmed cases of the virus and no new Covid-related deaths as of mid-June, with 36 deaths total. Most of those came from an outbreak at Brandon Woods nursing home in Bliss Corner. 

During the peak of the outbreak in April, Dartmouth saw as many as 78 new cases in just one week.

“The success that Massachusetts communities have made in slowing the spread of the disease should not be hampered by a return to normal activity,” noted the Dartmouth Board of Health in a statement earlier this summer. “We must remain committed to fighting Covid-19 in order to keep our communities safe and healthy.”

The news comes as Dartmouth Public Schools students are set to start the academic year on Sept. 15 with remote learning, changing to a hybrid in-person and online instruction model in October. 

Bishop Stang High School on Slocum Road will start off with a hybrid model on Sept. 14, while Friends Academy on Tucker Road will start full in-person classes outdoors from Sept. 8.

Meanwhile fewer UMass Dartmouth students than usual are moving into campus accommodation this week, as the university will be offering most of its courses remotely this semester.

Public Information Officer Det. Kyle Costa has previously noted that people should remain cautious and continue to follow state and CDC guidelines recommending regular hand washing, social distancing, and wearing a face covering in public.

“There could be an uptick, a second surge,” Costa said. “Being overly cautious is better than not being cautious enough. That’s the position that we’ve taken from day one and we’re gonna continue to do that until we beat this thing.”

There have been 118,784 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in Massachusetts as of August 31, representing over 1.7 percent of the state’s 6.8 million people. Of those cases, 9,141 are in Bristol County. 8,827 people have died of the illness in the state.