CORAL SPRINGS, FL – This weekend’s Our Town America Festival and next weekend’s 16th Annual Festival Of The Arts, which have attracted thousands of people to the city in the past, are still on, despite fears over the spread of the coronavirus, Coral Springs emergency management director said Wednesday.
Coral Springs has made this decision based on facts: the disease isn’t widespread in the city and so there’s no need to cancel public events at this point, said Alexander Falcone, director of emergency management, special events, and city security.
“We always want to make sure we’re making decisions that are pragmatic and objective,” he said. “We don’t want to make decisions based on fear or pressure.”
At least 28 people have tested positive in Florida for the coronavirus, including four in Broward County, according to Gov. Ron DeSantis. The four victims in Broward County are a 67-year-old man, a 75-year-old man, a 65-year-old man, and a 69-year-old woman. All four have been in isolation.
Coral Springs has started taking precautions to keep the coronavirus from spreading, Falcone said.
When people call 911 for help, dispatchers are now screening callers to find out if whoever needs emergency care shows symptoms of the coronavirus. If there are signs of illness, paramedics and firefighters will dress in protective gear to stay safe.
Also, Coral Springs-Parkland Fire Department’s staff and community paramedics have started visiting assisted living facilities and nursing homes as well as retirement and other communities to inform them about Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Florida Department of Health guidelines to protect residents.
And, Falcone said, the city has stepped up its public communication on what residents need to do to prevent the spread of the disease.
Falcone said the city is closely monitoring the disease and will make decisions based on its spread.
That includes, he said, the upcoming events.
Our Town America Festival will be held Friday through Sunday at 2575 Sportsplex Drive, and the 16th Annual Festival Of The Arts will be March 21-22 at The Walk at 2920 N. University Drive.
“We may cancel events based on severity but it’s something we’ll have to evaluate and wait and see as this progresses,” he said.