The Denton County Elections Administration has temporarily closed a polling location in Lewisville after a poll worker tested positive for COVID-19.
Elections officials said a clerk working at the Fred P. Herring Recreation Center in Lewisville reported feeling unwell on Wednesday and was tested for coronavirus after going to a doctor. The test was confirmed positive for COVID-19 and the elections site was shut down at 1 p.m. Thursday.
Crews could be seen through the windows, in full Personal Protection Equipment, deep disinfecting the early voting location.
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“They use a disinfectant that’s approved by the EPA," Denton County Elections Administrator Frank Phillips said. "They do rigorous cleaning of the entire facility but especially those highly touched surfaces.”
According to the county elections daily early voting report, nearly 2,000 people voted at the center in the first two days of early voting with 991 people voting at the center on Tuesday and another 953 voting at the location on Wednesday.
It is not yet clear how many people voted at the location before it was shut down on Thursday afternoon.
As part of the standard contact tracing performed with each positive case by Denton County Public Health (DCPH), any individual who has had extended exposure will be notified and asked to quarantine.
Phillips said 16 other poll workers volunteered during that time. He's not sure how many of them will be required to quarantine as a precaution. But says they have enough other workers to open Friday.
“We were flooded with volunteers and which is very fortunate for us," Phillips said. "So we do have standby crews ready and we’ll be ready to go tomorrow.”
Word of a positive case was concerning to those being turned away.
“Yes it is a big concern because we don’t want to get COVID,” voter Rosemarie Guerrero said.
“You don’t want anybody to come down with you know COVID," voter Martha Haleem said. "So it is a little bit concerning but you know I suppose I’ll come with wipes.”
The president of the Dallas County Medical Society said people voting are at a very low risk of catching coronavirus if everyone is wearing a mask.
“Yes you keep your six foot distancing in line, you get into the polling location, register with the poll attendant, get to your ballot, take care of it, get out safely and sanitize your hands afterwards," Dr. Mark Casanova said.
County officials said the center will be open for voting at 7 a.m.