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Indoor Special Olympics in York cancelled due to coronavirus concerns

Logan Hullinger
York Dispatch
The Special Olympics of Pennsylvania hold the opening ceremony for the 39th annual Spring Games, Saturday, May 4, 2019.
John A. Pavoncello photo

Special Olympics Pennsylvania cancelled this weekend's Indoor Winter Games in York County after state officials reported two confirmed cases of coronavirus.

Earlier Friday, Gov. Tom Wolf announced the two cases, one in Delaware County and one in Wayne County. They were the first confirmed cases in the state amid nationwide fear of the virus spreading.

"While this news is incredibly disappointing for all of us, the health and safety of our athletes, volunteers, staff, and partners is our top priority," said Special Olympics spokeswoman Hailey Fuzak in a news release. 

The events were scheduled to begin Saturday at York Expo Center in West Manchester. 

More:Pennsylvania now has 2 confirmed cases of coronavirus

The release noted that many participating in the Special Olympics are at a heightened risk because of age, compromised immune systems and other medical issues.

The state announced on Friday that five schools in Bucks County would be closed because "some members of its school community were exposed to a confirmed case of the new coronavirus," The Associated Press reported.

State officials expect more cases to be confirmed soon, Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine said Friday.

There have been 14 deaths in the U.S. related to the coronavirus. All but one victim resided in Washington state. 

There are more than 200 reported infections in the U.S., spanning across 18 states.

It is estimated the coronavirus has infected about 100,000 people worldwide. There have been more than 3,400 reported deaths, most of which have been in China.

Most cases have been mild and more than half of those infected have recovered.

— Logan Hullinger can be reached at lhullinger@yorkdispatch.com or via Twitter at @LoganHullYD.