THURSDAY NEWS HIT - Even as the CDC adjusts its quarantine period recommendation, the Michigan health department is holding steady on its guidelines for those who test positive for COVID-19 but aren't showing symptoms.
So far, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services is maintaining its quarantine guidelines that anyone who fits into that category should self-isolate for 10 days following infection. That could change though, MDHHS says, as additional information becomes available from the federal government.
The CDC adjusted its recommendation period on Monday, arguing that the first five days after someone contracts the virus is the most infectious period. "So that's the time we want you to stay home, and then after that period of time you can still technically spread the virus up to 10 days of time, and that’s why we want you to wear a mask," said Dr. Asha Shajahan, a family medicine physician for Beaumont Health and the medical director of Community Health for Beaumont Grosse Pointe.
Many saw the government's revision as another clash between public health and business practices, with the latter winning out.
But Dr. Anthony Fauci said the stakes of keeping the country running were always intertwined and the change was needed.
"There is the danger that there will be so many people who are being isolated who are asymptomatic for the full 10 days, you could have a major negative impact on our ability to keep society running," he said during a TV interview.
The shift in policy arrives at a dramatic moment for the pandemic, both in the country and in Michigan, which just reported it's highest daily case rate since the pandemic was first confirmed.
Wednesday's Covid update reported 25,858 cases over two days - about 12,929 per day. Another 338 people also died from the virus, the state said.
The numbers are glaringly large considering the availability of vaccines that can ward off death and infection. Officials have warned the holidays won't make it easier since a testing shortage may not keep everyone from visiting home despite being positive.
Omicron doesn't appear to be spreading as quickly through the state as previously expected. So far, 75 cases have been confirmed, including 22 in Detroit.
Any Detroiters looking to get tested will find their best chances at the Joseph Walker Williams Community Center on Rosa Parks Boulevard. Testing is available by appointment from 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. today and tomorrow.
Detroit residents or those that work in the city should call 313-230-0505
T-Mobile phone scam circulating
T-Mobile customers might be feeling a bit of Deja Vu right now after an alert that data from some 50 million users was hacked and exposed in August. Now, there's a new concern that some guys are swapping out SIM cards.
"Your phone essentially goes dead and the attacker ports out your number to their device and now they start receiving all of your calls, all of your text messages," David Derigiotis, a cybersecurity expert said.
At that point, the bag guys call your phone company and tell them they want to switch your information to a new phone. The danger is that personal information not necessarily kept on your phone can still be obtained since authentication apps on our phones often grant access to other accounts.
"If you’re using the text message as a second form of authentication for logging into an account whether it be a banking, email, whatever it may be," Derigiotis said. "They got access to that second authentication mechanism. That’s what happened to a number of individuals." Read what you should do to protect yourself here.
Firework laws this New Year's Eve
You can set off consumer-grade fireworks, but not illegal ones (obviously). They can set off at 12:30 a.m., but not past 1 a.m. And they must be lit on personal property. And don't think about doing it under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
These are the laws of Michigan's fireworks on New Year's Eve. Consumer-grade fireworks are allowed from 11 a.m. Dec. 31 until 1 a.m. Jan. 1, 2022. Public property, including streets and sidewalks, school property, or church property, are off limits. Also, it is illegal to light fireworks on someone else's property without permission.
If fireworks cause property damage, injure someone, or kill someone, the person who lit the firework could be charged with a misdemeanor or felony. Violating firework laws could lead to time in prison and fines up to $10,000.
Be sure to check local ordinances if you plan to use fireworks because some cities may have rules that are more restrictive than the state laws.
Man dies after crashing into Belle Isle statue
A man was pronounced dead after crashing into a statue on Belle Isle Wednesday afternoon, police said.
A DNR conservation officer observed a vehicle traveling at a high rate of speed without headlines when it hit the Alpheus Starkey Williams statue in the intersection of Central and Inselruhe Avenues.
The Eastpointe man may have intentionally driven into the statue, police said. Officers attempted to get the driver out of the car before it caught fire. They then performed CPR as the driver was unresponsive.
He was taken to the hospital where he was pronounced dead. The investigation is ongoing.
Water pipe break floods Detroit streets for over a week
A water main break has flooded streets in a west side Detroit neighborhood, creating a slippery mess - and frustrating residents. It has been more than a week since water started leaking from a six-inch underground pipe at the corner of Rosa Parks and Highland.
"Obviously it’s a leak and nobody wants to see a leak running near their house, I wouldn’t want to see it." said Sam Smalley, COO of the Detroit water department. "They were here two days ago, they did come out, I’m not gonna lie on them, they were here two days ago," said resident Mary Frasier. "I said, maybe they’re gonna get this water up - they did not."
The Detroit Water and Sewerage Department says a utility pole so close to the water main is prompting delays. DTE crews will have to use special equipment to hold the pole in place while water department crews fix the pipe - that dates back to 1916. People who live in the area and shop at the corner store just hope the repairs are done sooner than later.
The city cited the holidays and Covid as reasons for the delays in fixing the water main.
What else we're watching
- Central Michigan University announced it will require COVID-19 vaccine boosters for its students and staff for the upcoming semester. The University of Michigan announced a similar rule this week.
- Some 200 deer are expected to be culled as part of a wildlife management program in mid-Michigan. The cull will take place in Meridian township at designated parks and private preserves until Feb. 28.
- The J&J booster was found to cut omicron hospitalizations in half in South Africa, a new study found. The country was ground zero for many of the studies other countries are following as they manage their own omicron outbreaks.
- Following Bronco Day, the governor has announced Dec. 30 to be Spartan Day. Michigan State University is playing Pittsburgh in the first New Years Six bowl of the season.
- The Michigan redistricting commission has voted on its final maps for the upcoming decade. But critics have alleged the maps dilute representation from minority voters who will no longer have districts where they can vote in candidates easily.
Live on FOX 2
Get ready for a two-day bump in temperatures before they tumble on New Year's Day. Some rain is expected to fall today then pickup tomorrow evening. It will eventually transition to snow on Saturday.
Deathbed confession: Wanted bank robber reveals true identity 50 years later
Just before Thomas Randele died, his wife of nearly 40 years asked his golfing buddies and his co-workers from the dealerships where he sold cars to come by their home.
They gathered to say goodbye to a guy they called one of the nicest people they’d ever known — a devoted family man who gushed about his daughter, a golfer who never bent the rules, a friend to so many that a line stretched outside the funeral home a week later.
By the time of their final visit last May at Randele’s house in suburban Boston, the cancer in his lungs had taken away his voice. So they all left without knowing that their friend they’d spent countless hours swapping stories with never told them his biggest secret of all.
For the past 50 years, he was a fugitive wanted in one of the largest bank robberies in Cleveland’s history, living in Boston under a new name he created six months after the heist in the summer of 1969. Not even his wife or daughter knew until he told them in what authorities described as a deathbed confession.