St. Lucie Draft House Employee Tests Postive for COVID-19

JUNE 29, 2020 | 12:11 P.M. | PORT ST. LUCIE–The popular restaurant, St. Lucie Draft House, closed today after it was discovered one employee tested positive for COVID-19.

“At this time, we are temporarily closing to allow for a full professional deep cleaning and sanitization of the restaurant,” announced Draft House owner, Tami Scantland-McHale.

Scantland-McHale confirmed an employee who cleans the tables after a customer leaves, tested positive for the virus.

“The busser that tested positive is out for two weeks and needs two negative tests to return to work,” Scantland-McHale said.

At least two other employees reported they were tested last week with negative results.

According to the CDC, The incubation period for COVID-19, which is the time between exposure to the virus (becoming infected) and symptom onset, is on average five to six days. However, it can be up to 14 days. During this period, also known as the “pre-symptomatic” period, some infected persons can be contagious. Therefore, transmission from a pre-symptomatic case can occur before symptom onset.

While the restaurant was planning on closing over the holiday weekend for inside work, this early closure came unexpectedly.  Scantland-McHale said they plan on re-opening on Tuesday, July 7.

Employees at the restaurant are required to wear masks and a contractor comes in weekly to clean and sanitize the establishment.

Scantland-McHale said because of the federal funding to cover wages under the CARES Act, she is able to pay the salaries of her employees during the closure.

The virus is forcing local restaurants to shut down on the Treasure Coast.

Shuckers on Hutchinson Island closed June 25 after it reported that at least one employee had tested positive for the virus, and it “had emanated from their establishment.” It has since re-opened.

The Stuart Boathouse also announced  June 25  that it was closing because of the proximity of cases nearby.  There is no word when they will re-open.

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