FedEx confirms Olathe distribution plant COVID-19 cluster

Posted at 5:19 PM, May 15, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-15 18:20:07-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A day after Johnson County Health Department officials announced the county’s first workplace cluster of COVID-19 cases, officials at shipping giant FedEx confirmed their Olathe distribution plant as the location of the cluster.

In a statement provided to 41 Action News, the company said they are working with local and state health officials to offer voluntary COVID-19 testing to employees and vendors at its Olathe facility.

“While there have been some reported cases among workers, there is no indication that the virus has been spread within the workplace,” the company said in a statement.

Johnson County health officials said Thursday that nine workers tested positive. Officials at the health department did not separately confirm the cases were at the FedEx facility.

In a statement earlier Friday to 41 Action News, Johnson County Department of Health and Environment Director Dr. Sanmi Areola said that because the building is not accessible to the public that “there is no benefit to the community’s public health to release the name of the facility.”

Areola added that his department expects “quite a few outbreaks” like the one announced Thursday as businesses reopen.

The FedEx statement said the company is taking the following additional precautions:

  • Following guidance from public health organizations and other experts
  • Informing team members, service providers and vendors when there is a confirmed case in the building,
  • Identifying anyone who has had close contact with the infected individual to ensure they are taking the recommended precautionary measures, and
  • Thoroughly sanitizing potentially affected areas of the facility.