North Slope

Pipelines lead to one of BP’s facilities on the North Slope. (Photo courtesy BP)

The statewide tally of confirmed COVID-19 cases has risen to 133 –– 14 additional cases from Monday from five Alaska communities.

Five of those were in Fairbanks, according to Chief Medical Officer Dr. Anne Zink.

Two of the other cases were in Anchorage, two in Eagle River, four in Juneau, and one in Kenai.

Two of the new cases are adults over the age of 60; 10 are ages 30 to 59; and two are ages 19 to 29. Five of the cases are close contacts of previously diagnosed cases; two are travel-related and seven are still under investigation, according to the Department of Health and Social Services.

No new deaths have been announced, but nine Alaskans are currently hospitalized due to complications from the disease, according to the state health department.

Oil and gas corporation BP Alaska has confirmed that a Prudhoe Bay worker has tested positive for COVID-19.

Health and Social Services Commissioner Adam Crum said the the worker is an Alaska resident who had recently traveled out of state and returned before Gov. Mike Dunleavy's mandate against travel was imposed. The patient traveled to the North Slope on March 25, displayed symptoms within two days of arriving and was tested and put in quarantine, as were his immediately identified close contacts, Crum stated.

Megan Baldino, spokeswoman for BP Alaska, said in a statement Tuesday afternoon that BP responded in accordance with guidelines.

"BP is following procedures and protocols to minimize the risk of COVID19 and ensure the safety of our people," she said.

All non-essential activity on the North Slope is being eliminated, Baldino said, but she did not provide details of what type of activity that includes.

"The safety and well-being of staff and contractors and respect for the communities in which we operate is our highest priority," she wrote.

The case announced Tuesday afternoon is the first confirmation of the illness on the North Slope. State officials had expressed concern previously about cases in this region spreading quickly due to close living quarters for workers. So far, this is the only confirmed case in the Northern region.

A total of 4,603 Alaskans have been tested for the virus to date, according to Gov. Mike Dunleavy.

Zink noted that Alaska has some of the broader testing guidelines in the country right now and is expecting more testing supplies next week.

Editor's note: This story has been updated with new information from the state, which reports that the North Slope worker is an Alaska resident.

Contact staff writer Erin McGroarty at 459-7544. Follow her on Twitter: @FDNMpolitics.