May 28, 2020 8:00 PM

Update: Construction resumes at biosecurity lab in Manhattan

Posted May 28, 2020 8:00 PM

MANHATTAN, Kan. (AP) — Construction has resumed at the national biosecurity lab in Manhattan after a brief shutdown because a worker tested positive for COVID-19.

Officials stopped the work Tuesday to clean potentially contaminated areas where the worker might have been. Work resumed on Wednesday. Project officials did not provide the ill worker’s gender, age or county of residence.

Workers at the site are not being routinely tested for COVID-19 but they are required to wear face coverings, follow social distancing and answer health screening questions when they arrive at work. 

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Manhattan, Kan. (AP) —Construction on a national biosecurity lab in Manhattan has been halted after a worker tested positive for COVID-19, officials announced Wednesday.

Work was stopped Tuesday on the National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility when the positive test was confirmed, said program manager Timothy Barr.

The employee is with McCarthy Mortenson Joint Venture, the construction contractor for NBAF.

The contractor will determine what areas, tools and materials might need additional cleaning and disinfection while construction is stalled.

Officials did not estimate how long the site might be closed but did not expect an extended shutdown.

The worker is not from Riley County but no information about the person was released.

Disruptions caused by the coronavirus to the supply and labor chain have already delayed the project. Officials said in April that the lab’s original commission date of May 2021 has been delayed by at least 2.5 months.