Coronavirus cases have shut down Seattle operations for the two tech giants.
Businesses all over the world are suffering rippling effects as coronavirus cases increase in number. While the number of fatalities in the US is still relatively low, many companies are concerned about employees spreading the disease to each other due to the virus’s long incubation period. Unfortunately, despite these companies’ best efforts, the coronavirus has still managed to infiltrate the ranks of their employees.
In Seattle, Washington, where both Amazon and Facebook maintain presences, the employee populations of both companies have been asked to remain at home. Amazon revealed that one of its Seattle employees had been diagnosed with the virus, while Facebook announced that a contractor who works at one of its offices in Seattle has been diagnosed as well.
“We are recommending that employees in Seattle [and] Bellevue who are able to work from home do so through the end of the month,” a spokesperson from Amazon spokesperson said.
Meanwhile, Facebook made a similar announcement. “We’ve notified our employees and are following the advice of public health officials to prioritize everyone’s health and safety,” they said.
#WORLD ─ #Amazon confirms first #COVID19 case among U.S. employees.
According to the news agency #Reuters, the online retailer https://t.co/83WJ8dt6qh Inc said on Tuesday, an employee in the United States tested positive for the #coronavirus. pic.twitter.com/jsO8aHGSXg
— The Killid Group (@TheKillidGroup) March 4, 2020
In the case of the Amazon employee, they began exhibiting symptoms on February 25, and have not been in the Seattle office since then. Even so, Amazon has elected to shut its doors in Seattle until April to play things safe. All workers who were in close contact with the employee before their diagnosis were also notified.
While they have not had any reported cases of coronavirus, fellow tech giants Google, Microsoft, and Twitter have also asked their Washington employees to work from home if their positions allow for it.
At least 11 coronavirus-related fatalities have been confirmed in the US, with at least 100 more in a sickened state. This is in addition to the 3,300 confirmed fatalities worldwide and the 94,000 confirmed worldwide cases.