Gov. Phil Murphy (D) identified seven municipalities in the state of New Jersey that are “hot spots” expected to see a spike in COVID-19 cases in the coming days, two of which are North Bergen and West New York (and possibly also Guttenberg).
“This slide shows us, currently, … where those of you who are visiting covid19.nj.gov and taking our self-assessment are reporting from,” the governor said during today’s press conference in Trenton.
“And as of this morning, this self-assessment has been used nearly 209,000 times … The zip codes are in counties Passaic, two in Middlesex, two in Hudson, a third in Passaic, and one in Somerset – those are the most often self reports [areas] right now.”
He added that these self-reports provide “an early snapshot” of where COVID-19 symptoms are beginning to emerge, helping the state to assess future PPE and other medical equipment needs.
While he didn’t name any of the seven municipalities by name, the seven zip codes identify Passaic, Perth Amboy, North Brunswick, West New York, North Bergen, Clifton, and Somerset. Guttenberg also shares the same zip code as West New York (07093).
The chart he referenced (pictured above) says “the following zip codes are predicted to yield the most positive cases in the coming days.”
As of this evening, North Bergen had announced 631 coronavirus cases, while West New York has 446. Guttenberg Mayor Wayne Zitt also provided an update today, indicating that there were 66 cases as of this afternoon.
State Senator (D-32)/North Bergen Mayor Nick Sacco addressed the latest development late this evening, asking non-essential workers to to stay home.
“This is an important time to stay home, if at all possible. That is the best way that we can all support our essential workers. Keep safe, we are all in this together,” he wrote on social media.
“Per the new self assessment tool on covid19.nj.gov, West New York is a potential hotspot and is slated to have an uptick in cases in the coming week. Please stay home!,” the Town of West New York posted on their Instagram page.
While Murphy expressed some optimism about the curve finally beginning to come down, he was realistic in saying that the pandemic is still far from over in New Jersey.
“The curve is flattening. But this is no time to spike any footballs or take our foot off the gas. We still have a week-and-a-half to go, at least, before we hit the peak. This is not over. And not by a long shot.”
According to projections released by the New Jersey Department of Health, a best case scenario would see the number of COVID-19 infections peaking on April 10th, which would require 9,000 hospitalizations.
Conversely, their worst case scenario shows that the peak wouldn’t hit until April 28th and would require four times as many hospitalizations: 36,000.
This afternoon, the NJ DOH said there are 41,090 coronavirus cases and 1,0003 deaths statewide, which includes 4,395 cases and 92 deaths in Hudson County.
Editor’s note: This story has been updated with new information.