More Than 200 Planet Fitness Members May Have Been Exposed to Coronavirus

Lizzy Buczak
July 01, 2020 - 3:41 pm

A Planet Fitness in West Virgina is urging more than 200 people to quarantine after a member tested positive for coronavirus.

According to a press release from the Monongalia County Health Department (MCHD), a patron that visited the Morgantown location on June 24 between the hours of 9am and 3pm may have exposed 205 people to the novel virus.

The press release notes members should quarantine for 14 days and get tested immediately if they notice any symptoms.

The report notes that MCHB public health nurses are contact tracing to determine the spread of the virus.

McCall Gosselin, Planet Fitness spokeswoman and senior vice president of communications, told TODAY that they are unaware of any additional cases. She said they are working closely with the health department and that the location was “temporarily closed for deep cleaning” following its reopening on June 6.

"We will continue to take every necessary precaution to ensure the safety of our community, and have taken a number of steps across all of our locations, which include enhanced cleanliness and sanitization policies and procedures, extensive training for staff, physical distancing measures, reducing physical touch points in the club with touchless check-in, and more," Gosselin said.

Planet Fitness gym member James Cottrell told 12WBOY that he has never had a problem with the cleanliness of the gym. "They’ve always done a good job supplying the cleaners and everything else everyone needs, plus if you — it’s not really, let me say, up to the gym ownership. I would say it’s more of the patrons’ duty to keep the place clean and I think if everyone would contribute it would go a lot smoother."

John Whyte, MD, MPH, a chief medical officer, admitted there’s no evidence that they gym is not safe, but encouraged the public to take proper precautions while working out.

Since the virus is spread through “direct contact with respiratory droplets,” he said that people are less likely to get infected by touching a contaminated surface like shared dumbbells or public machines.

However, he recommended wiping down your workout area and machines prior to and after your workout. Additionally, he urged people to avoid people who are coughing or sneezing, practicing proper social distancing, washing your hands, avoiding touching your face while at the gym, and showering after a workout.

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