Live coronavirus updates for Tuesday, May 19: Distiller delivers hand sanitizer to hard-hit Navajo Nation; Salt Lake County Library to offer curbside service May 26

(Trent Nelson | The Salt Lake Tribune) A man wearing a mask drives in Ogden on Saturday, May 9, 2020.

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It’s Tuesday, May 19. We’ll provide the latest coronavirus updates involving Utah throughout the day.

[Read more coronavirus coverage here.]


5:10 p.m.: Ogden-based distiller delivers disinfectant to Navajo Nation

A Utah distiller hand-delivered a large shipment of disinfectant to the Navajo Nation this week in an effort to aid a community hardest hit by the pandemic.

Ogden’s Own Distillery trucked 485 gallons of its Five Wives Hand Sanitizer to Shiprock, N.M., on Tuesday in an attempt to curb the spread of COVID-19 in the region.

The Navajo Nation has lost 140 citizens to the virus, a higher death count than 13 states including Utah. It also has the highest infection rate in the country, surpassing New York and New Jersey.

“We are extremely fortunate to be in a position where we’re able to help people and make a difference,” said Steve Conlin, CEO of Ogden’s Own, in a news release.

The Ogden-based distiller pivoted to making disinfectant in March and currently produces 7,000 gallons a week.

— Leia Larsen

4:35 p.m.: Utah has 8 more coronavirus deaths — the highest daily death toll yet in the state

Eight more Utahns have died from the coronavirus, state health officials reported Tuesday — the highest single-day number of deaths the state has seen so far.

Six of those who died were from Salt Lake County, one man lived in Washington County and another man was from Utah County.

Three of the Salt Lake County residents who died were living in long-term care facilities.The remaining five had been hospitalized before their deaths.

Utah’s coronavirus death toll is now at 88.The state now has 7,518 COVID-19 cases, 134 more than was reported Monday.

Twenty-four more people have been hospitalized since the day before, bringing the total to 619 hospitalizations.

There are 96 Utahns who have tested positive for the virus who are currently hospitalized. So far, 177,311 people have been tested for the coronavirus.

In the last day, 3,289 more tests have been tallied.The health department reports 4,275 cases are considered “recovered,” meaning it’s been three weeks since they were first diagnosed and they are still alive.

— Jessica Miller

4:30 p.m.: Salt Lake County Library to start curbside service May 26

People can now return books, DVDs and CDs at Salt Lake County Library book drops again, and curbside services will be available May 26.

“The county library is planning to continue a phased reopening of branches for the public by early July,” according to a news release. Curbside service “will be set up to be as contactless as possible.”

Library staff “will wear face coverings, maintain 6 feet of physical distance and maintain a heightened cleaning and disinfecting schedule to ensure safety.” Patrons are encouraged to do the same.

People can arrange for curbside delivery by reserving a pick up time at any branch either online or by calling customer service.

The library system closed to the public March 13 in compliance with a Salt Lake County public health order.

In the meantime, staff members have worked on creating learning activities and providing digital materials. Some people assisted other county agencies, sewing masks, assisting local businesses to navigate reopening and supporting quarantine and isolation centers.

“While we’ve seen a 135% increase in our online learning platforms and a 58% increase in e-book utilization, we know that isn’t the preferred format for many in our community,” Jim Cooper, county library director, said in a statement. “We’ve developed plans to make sure patrons can still access their county library and our physical collection, but in a way that maintains safety for the community and our staff.”

— Becky Jacobs

11:15 a.m.: Crossroads Urban Center to hold virtual fundraiser

Crossroads Urban Center is moving its annual “Beers, Blues and Brats” fundraiser online.

Tickets for the May 30 virtual event are $5 at vbtix.givesmart.com.

Those who buy a ticket and create an account will receive a link to access the event, which runs from 5 to 7 p.m. Listen to performances by Utah musicians, participate in optional games, hear from Crossroads officials and bid on auction items.

For those who can’t attend, there is an option to bid on auction items or to donate.

For more than 50 years — and during the current pandemic — the center has provided food, supplies and advocacy for the most vulnerable community members.

“We have kept our doors open — facing increased need with decreased resources,” officials said. Money raised “allows us to keep being there for those in need.”

— Kathy Stephenson

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