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L.A. County reports 16 more SoFi Stadium workers have coronavirus

Construction continues at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood.
Construction is in its final stages at SoFi Stadium, the future home of the Rams and Chargers, in Inglewood.
(Dania Maxwell / Los Angeles Times)

As construction at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood enters the final stages, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health reported Friday that 49 people working at the $5-billion project have tested positive for the novel coronavirus.

The total, which doesn’t detail when the workers were tested or what jobs they performed, represents an increase of 16 cases in the department’s count in a little more than a week.

The department also reported seven people working for the general contractor overseeing construction of the adjacent NFL Media building have tested positive. Two other people are listed as symptomatic, but the cases hadn’t been confirmed.

Last month, the department told The Los Angeles Times that “an investigation was opened” into COVID-19 cases at SoFi Stadium, but the agency hasn’t responded to questions about what that includes or about the most recent cases at the 298-acre site.

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Turner-AECOM Hunt, the joint venture leading the stadium project, said in a statement it has a “robust mitigation program” to combat the spread of the illness that includes close contract tracing for positive and presumed positive cases.

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“To put the number of confirmed cases in perspective, over the past five months there have been in excess of 4,000 people on site,” the statement said.

The Times has reviewed internal notices for 39 of the cases connected to the stadium that the joint venture has emailed to trade partners since late March. Most of the cases have been reported in June and July.

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Of the 14 cases the joint venture has announced in July, the emails said six were asymptomatic and four had “minor symptoms.” The severity of the illness wasn’t indicated for four others.

The seven most recent cases the joint venture disclosed to trade partners last Friday and Saturday include three workers at the performance venue that’s under the same roof as the stadium, plus one worker in an office trailer, one worker on the stadium roof, one on Levels 4 and 5 of the stadium and one on Level 9.

A construction worker dies at SoFi Stadium on Tuesday after exhibiting ‘signs of a health issue,’ according to the joint venture overseeing the project.

The emails repeated boilerplate language consistent with previous announcements: “Based on the above information the Project remains open to work without restriction.”

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A series of safety measures were instituted at the site earlier this year in response to the virus, including mandatory face coverings, temperature checks for each person entering the site, social distancing and requiring nonessential employees to work from home.

The stadium developers said this month that the project is 97% complete, though it’s unclear when fans will be able to watch games in the 70,000-seat, sail-shaped venue because of the pandemic.


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