LOS ANGELES -- Turner AECOM Hunt, the joint venture overseeing the construction of SoFi Stadium, acknowledged Sunday that an ironworker at the site tested positive for COVID-19, as reported the day before by Sports Illustrated's ChargerReport, and that construction will continue.
"A trader worker tested positive for the COVID-19 virus," the company said in a press release. "First and most importantly, the worker is doing well, receiving care, and is recovering."
Turner AECOM Hunt goes on to claim that the infected worker "was assigned to an isolated, material pre-assembly area outside the building" and "had not at any time entered the building or used any of its common areas." Those who came into contact with the worker have received notice of the illness and have either self-quarantined if they had "close contact" or are "self-monitoring" in the case of "casual contact."
While the project has suspended or re-sequenced select parts of the construction, work on the stadium will continue with enhancements to the health and safety protocols. Turner AECOM Hunt has increased the number of toilet facilities and wash stations around the site and installed full-time monitors to ensure those sanitation areas remain "clean, operational, and stocks" in accordance with L.A. County Department of Health and Center for Disease Control guidelines.
"We are fully transparent in our communications with everyone; trades and supervision," Turner AECOM Hunt says. "This includes any potential or confirmed exposures, daily updates on best practices, governmental guidelines, directives, and listening to and addressing any concerns workers have."
The protocols came into place after the state of California issued a stay-at-home order on March 19 in response to the coronavirus pandemic. The order limited both public and private gatherings to 10 people or less and forced any business activity not deemed essential to suspend its operations. Officials gave the SoFi Stadium project permission to continue construction during the order, though the state can halt work at its discretion.
The SoFi Stadium construction crossed the 85% completion threshold in January, though significant work remains before the facility can begin holding public events. Upon completion, the stadium will host concerts such as pop star Taylor Swift's scheduled performance on July 25 -- the venue's official debut -- as well as home games for the Los Angeles Chargers and Los Angeles Rams.
-- Jason B. Hirschhorn is an award-winning sports journalist and Pro Football Writers of America member. Follow him on Twitter: @by_JBH