Coronavirus

Katelyn Freund

As businesses and organizations are shutting their doors in the wake of COVID-19, so are animal shelters. Last week, the New Hanover and Brunswick County Sheriff’s Offices announced adoptions have been suspended this month. But shelter animals are still finding foster homes -- through people who now have some extra time on their hands. 

Because of COVID-19 and social distancing regulations, theaters and concert halls are closed across most of the country. Here in the Cape Fear region all music venues, theaters, and galleries are shuttered. So painters and musicians are going virtual. WHQR visits with one artist who’s doing both.

Vince Winkel

In North Carolina schools are closed, and for many the school year appears to be over. That means thousands of high schoolers in the Cape Fear region are at home. Many use Zoom for lectures, and email to turn in assignments. Their parents juggle work, if they still have a job, with helping their kids. WHQR  checks in with one Wilmington family.

Vince Winkel

Government officials are warning that the next few weeks will be crucial in the fight to stop the spread of COVID-19. In the U.S., more than 9,500 people have already died from the virus. In North Carolina, 2,600  are now infected with the virus.  WHQR spoke with Wilmington Mayor Bill Saffo, to get his latest assessment of the local situation.

Hannah Breisinger

Here you can find graphs and charts visualizing COVID-19 data in North Carolina. All data can be found at the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Service's website.

Vince Winkel

This week 6.6 million Americans filed for unemployment insurance. North Carolina has already processed 355,000 unemployment claims. That number is expected to climb rapidly. For many people unemployment is new territory. 

WHQR/Nick Santillo

Because of COVID-19, the Environmental Protection Agency issued a suspension of its enforcement of environmental laws, telling companies they won’t have to meet environmental standards during the outbreak. What does that mean for the Cape Fear Region?

Beth Gaglione / Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina - Wilmington

Since last week, Governor Roy Cooper has handed down a statewide Stay At Home Order.  Some counties and municipalities have gone even further with stay-at-home guidance.  For example, New Hanover County has defined specific businesses that must close such as auto dealerships and hotels and motels. When there are discrepancies between the state and local orders, the more restrictive version takes precedence.  

Vince Winkel

Over 270,000 unemployment insurance claims have been filed in North Carolina in the past two weeks, and Governor Roy Cooper is seeking to increase benefits by $600. Many of those most in need work in the restaurant and service industries.

 

 

RLH / WHQR

Help is on the way for small businesses and families – from the state and from federal stimulus checks.  But there’s more.  North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper has issued a new Executive Order to help people worried about paying bills on April 1st. 

Adobe Stock


As Covid-19 spreads, scientists and healthcare providers are worried about more than the physical health of Americans. Experts warn that people need to take care of themselves mentally, as well -- now more than ever. 

Vince Winkel

The Wilmington City Council unanimously expressed support for New Hanover County’s additional restrictions designed to control the spread of the coronavirus. They went into effect Monday.   The state-wide stay at home order closing all non-essential businesses also is now in effect.  

Adobe Stock

North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein is working with Amazon to investigate nine North Carolina businesses and sellers over price gouging concerns.  A press release says Stein was notified by Amazon that nine sellers had raised prices dramatically for items that have been in high demand during the coronavirus pandemic -- including hand sanitizer and N95 masks.

New Hanover County, in collaboration with the City of Wilmington and the towns of Carolina Beach, Kure Beach and Wrightsville Beach, will be implementing additional county-wide restrictions that support the Governor’s statewide order to help slow the spread of COVID-19 and help prevent the healthcare system from becoming overburdened in the weeks to come.  

NC DHHS

Coronavirus Edition #2.  So much has changed in a week.  Many more people are working from home – or not working at all.  North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper has lowered the threshold for mass gatherings from 100 to 50.  He’s ordered more business closures – gyms, movie theaters, salons.  He’s extended public school closures to May 15th. 

Nations across the world are imposing travel restrictions to curb the spread of the coronavirus. On March 16, Germany closed its borders with Austria, Denmark, France, Luxembourg and Switzerland. Germany is where Hedi Perotto is. The Wilmington resident went there three weeks ago for a family reunion. 

As the coronavirus spreads in the Cape Fear Region, we’re learning more about how people are diagnosed and what treatment in isolation looks and feels like.

Vince Winkel

The Chemours Company in Fayetteville has scaled back both well-sampling for PFAS and the installation of filtration systems because of the coronavirus. Chemours’ request to suspend those operations has been approved by The North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality. 

Rachel Keith

The North Carolina death toll from COVID-19 is now two.  In a recent media briefing, Governor Roy Cooper reminds people that these deaths are just the beginning.  

Adobe Stock

Brunswick County leaders have issued a state of emergency due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Vince Winkel

The New Hanover Regional Medical Center’s Physician Group has implemented some operational changes to protect patients, staff, and the community during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

WHQR/Nick Santillo

The mission of Wilmington’s Good Shepherd Center is to feed the hungry, shelter the homeless and foster transition to housing. Today, those needs are more urgent than usual, as the coronavirus puts a strain on organizations that serve the less fortunate.

RLH / WHQR

Governor Roy Cooper has issued a new Executive Order that extends public school closures through May 15th and shuts down massage therapy, nail and hair salons, gyms, and movie theaters.  

Adobe Stock

Brunswick County identified two more presumptive positive cases of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) Saturday, bringing the total number of identified cases to six.

Brunswick County considers and responds to presumptive positive cases as if they were positive, even while awaiting official confirmation of results from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Vince Winkel

New Hanover County has issued a State of Emergency, prohibiting gatherings of more than 10 people and closing public beach access points in order to ensure social distancing and reduce the risk of COVID-19. 

U.S. Centers for Disease Control

As the Cape Fear region adjusts to Coronavirus precautions, each day brings a rise in the number of presumptive cases across the state.   But the narrow testing criteria makes it hard to measure the scope of infection in North Carolina.

Town of Wrightsville Beach

On Friday, March 20th, the Mayor and Board of Alderman of Wrightsville Beach declared a state of emergency for the Town. Until further notice, the order will remain in effect until March 31st. Wrightsville Beach Town officials say effective immediately the oceanfront beach strand and southside beaches are closed to residents and visitors. And, all Town restrooms will be closed.

Hannah Breisinger

Brunswick County has identified its second presumptive positive case of COVID-19. 

NC DHHS

As the coronavirus spreads across North Carolina, the battle moves into a new phase.  State officials say the response is no longer containment.  It's now mitigation. 

Pages