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State shuts indoor ice rinks for two weeks due to hockey-related coronavirus cases

The state Department of Public Health announced today it's ordering all indoor ice rinks shut from 5:30 p.m. on Friday until Nov. 7 because of a rise in Covid-19 cases linked to youth hockey players.

This order is in response to multiple COVID-19 clusters occurring at rinks throughout the state following games, practices and tournaments. Neighboring states including New Hampshire have enacted similar temporary restrictions regarding indoor ice hockey.

There have been at least 30 clusters of COVID-19 associated with organized ice hockey activities involving residents from more than 60 municipalities in Massachusetts. Each of these includes two or more confirmed or probable COVID-19 cases, totaling 108 confirmed cases.

This pause will allow for the development of stronger COVID-19 protocols to further protect players, families, coaches, arena staff and other participants, as well as communities surrounding hockey rinks.

The announcement comes the same day as the state announced 986 new coronavirus cases, a number we had not seen since mid-May. The state also announced 30 Covid-19 deaths.

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Comments

That's actually higher than Florida's 7-day average per 100k population. When does MA start requiring its own residents to quarantine when they leave their homes?

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Kidlet is crushed that we are off the ice for the next two weeks. That said, the Mass. Hockey guidelines still allowed for players to dodge wearing masks in some instances - including practices. And a recent relaxation of travel restrictions in our program means interstate spread was inevitable.

I hope that Mass. Hockey comes back with an “always on” mask guideline as well as a standard spectator:participant ratio. The individual rinks (and their municipalities) did a great job of creating guidelines to adapt to the pandemic - from eliminating usage of locker rooms to (in some cases) banning spectators completely. But I’ve got a ~40 page PDF of different rink guidelines to review for each away game that was outdated almost as soon as it went to print.

Here’s hoping we can get this reopened next month.

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Hate to stereotype but the most Trumpie people is this state (next to the snowplow drivers who will all see their taxes be the same under Biden, but you know Trump makes them feel good) are suburban parents with pick up trucks and Chevy Suburbans who have their kids skating at 530 in the morning. Trust me I used to live near a rink. Hell hath no fury like someone getting her kid to practice on time. My house used to shake at about 5 minutes to the hour every hour with Mommy Tanks hitting Warp 1 getting to the rink.

You really think this crowd with dreams of scholarships to UMaine or Merrimack were going to go along with guidelines? Hell no, Brady has got a tournament. He's 7. The scouts are looking at him. He has to play.

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Donald Trump makes his base supporters feel good, because they either don't know any better, they're willfully ignorant, or a combination of both, if one gets the drift.

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WTF??? Where did that come from? Is that hockey league all Trump supporters?

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Frankly, I think that the ice hockey rink in question should've been shut down for way longer than two weeks.

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I saw the general info in the DPH release, but didn’t know more than that. Hockey has been back for a couple of months now, so this was a sad (but in many ways expected) turn of events.

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Could you expand on the mask waiver requirements?

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Not a waiver. Just the guidance on when you should wear it. From Mass. Hockey:

"...hockey players participating in face-offs must wear facial coverings. Participants for
ALL SPORTS must wear facial coverings on the bench at all times and in any huddles
or time-outs."

https://cdn3.sportngin.com/attachments/document/be8d-2276064/COVID19_MA_...

Basically the guidance was - mask on the bench (or the box) and during a faceoff. But that doesn't cover most close contact times on the ice. It should have just been mandatory once you're out of your car, regardless of practice, game, etc.

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Skating with a mask on sucks. There are other options.

Bauer made a splash guard for their mask. Also CCM is coming out with an in game mask which basically Velcro's to your cage.

Bauer
https://www.purehockey.com/product/bauer-concept-iii-splash-guard-2-pack...

CCM
https://www.purehockey.com/product/ccm-game-on-player-face-mask/itm/4440...

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Especially given that the face-off transitions directly into play, and theoretically any skater could wind up taking a face-off under the right circumstances. As you said, just a blanket mandatory rule seems a lot more sensible here.

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Why does Mass Hockey get to contradict the governor's mask order?

Masks are required in any situation when social distancing isn't possible.

You're indoors with people not from your household. Masks, period.

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