Kings County sets up free COVID-19 testing site at reopened flea market

KINGS COUNTY, Calif. (KFSN) -- COVID-19 shut down Alma's Flea Market in Hanford for more than two months.

But last week, the state approved Kings County's variance attestation, which allows swap meets like Alma's to reopen.

Alma's was back in business on Monday.

The Kings County Department of Public Health was also on site-offering free COVID-19 testing to anyone, including the uninsured and undocumented.

"We wanted to show a good partnership with our community and businesses as they start to reopen-show that unity and the support for each other," said Kings County Public Health Director Edward Hill.

More than 4,500 tests have been conducted and reported in Kings County so far.

Kings County officials say testing has ramped up since the state site was set up in Hanford, and they have expanded their daily testing capacity to two per 1,000 residents, or more than 300 tests per day.

"The more people we test, the more people we find out that are either positive with symptoms, positive without symptoms, or those that aren't positive," Hill said. "Just so we have a true understanding of the actual infection rate in the county."

Kings County has had several large COVID-19 outbreaks, including Central Valley Meat Company, and more recently, Avenal State Prison.

So as businesses start to come back, they'll do what they can to reduce the risk of the virus.

For Alma's, that means masks, extra handwashing stations, and enforced social distancing.

"It's pretty light today and I haven't seen any big clusters of people," Alma's Flea Market Owner Charlene Jespersen said. "It's been pretty quiet."
Copyright © 2020 KFSN-TV. All Rights Reserved.