By Tina Bellon
(Reuters) – Tesla Inc Chief Executive Elon Musk and other Tesla employees are not at risk of having contracted the novel coronavirus after a July 3 meeting with Oklahoma’s governor, who said on Wednesday he had tested positive for the virus, a spokesman for the governor said.
“That visit was more than a week before the governor may have been contagious. There is no risk to any Tesla employees from the July 3 visit,” Charlie Hannema, a spokesman for Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt said in a statement, adding an additional meeting with Tesla executives on Monday was conducted virtually over Zoom.
“The science now is that an infected person is only possibly contagious 48 hours before the onset of symptoms,” Hannema said, adding that since Stitt’s symptoms developed on Monday, anyone in contact with him before Saturday is not at risk of exposure.
Tesla did not respond to a request for comment on whether company employees, including Musk, have been tested for the virus or other measures taken.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on its website https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/hcp/faq.html states that the period of infectiousness for COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus, is not yet known. But it says that based on existing literature, the time from exposure to the development of symptoms ranges from two to 14 days.
The CDC also recommends that anyone who has come in contact with a person who has COVID-19 should stay home for 14 days.
Musk and other Tesla executives met with Stitt and his team on July 3 to visit the site of a potential new Tesla vehicle factory. Oklahoma and Texas are both competing for the new $1.1 billion plant that promises to create thousands of new jobs.
(Reporting by Tina Bellon in New York; Editing by Chris Reese and Aurora Ellis)