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Dozens of COVID cases affiliated with Rivian employees, construction workers
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Dozens of COVID cases affiliated with Rivian employees, construction workers

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The new Rivian SUV takes a test drive in downtown Bloomington.

NORMAL — Dozens of the confirmed cases of COVID-19 in McLean County in recent weeks have been affiliated with workers at the Rivian manufacturing site in Normal, the company confirmed Friday. 

A company spokesperson told The Pantagraph that 31 Rivian employees and 61 contract workers, who are largely hired for construction projects and not affiliated directly with the company, have tested positive for the virus since the week of March 25.

The 31 positive cases from Rivian employees came from a batch of about 7,000 tests run through the Illinois State University lab, which uses rapid, saliva-based testing. 

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Rivian spokesman Zach Dietmeier said the number was not huge, but also "not insignificant." The company isn't considering the number of cases an outbreak, since the plant was segmented into different areas early on to "identify and contain something like this," and the cases originated from separate areas, he said. 

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Rivian employees who test positive for the virus are required to quarantine for 10 days and can return to work after three days without symptoms, he said. 

Of the 61 positive cases among contract workers, Dietmeier said those were split among dozens of workers beneath three general contractors who manage the company's ongoing construction products. 

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