The COVID-19 testing tent at Petersburg’s airport (Joe Viechnicki/KFSK)

Petersburg is now at six active cases of COVID-19 with new positive test results announced Friday, Saturday and Sunday. However, emergency officials say there’s low risk of spread from these new cases.

The borough’s Emergency Operations Center announced two positive cases Sunday, November 22 and another one on Friday, November 20. All three are close contacts of another announced on November 14. They are Alaskan residents who traveled together as a group to Petersburg from another part of the state. One in that group sought medical advice after traveling here and then learning a member of their family tested positive elsewhere in Alaska.

That brings the cases among that travel group to four. The group is in a congregate setting and has been isolating and watching for symptoms, according to the EOC. The risk spread to the rest of the community is very low.

The EOC says state contact tracers have done an investigation and all close contacts are known. Officials also note that quarantining in a group can lead to a lengthened isolation time. As more members of the group develop symptoms and test positive, others not showing symptoms restart their 14-day quarantine period. The EOC recommends planning for isolation and quarantine locations in case of infection while traveling.

In addition the EOC also announced a positive test result for a Petersburg resident on Saturday, November 21. That person has been out of town for an extended time and remains outside of Petersburg. Emergency officials say that resident is isolating and will not return to Petersburg until cleared by public health. This positive was picked up through travel testing mandated by the state.

In total Petersburg now is at 34 cases, with six considered active as on Monday morning.

(Editor’s note: this story has been corrected to show the total case count at 34, including 21 residents and 13 non-residents since the start of the pandemic)