Dozens Of Spring Breakers Have Tested Positive For Coronavirus

Two weeks ago, around 70 spring breakers from the University of Texas at Austin went against the advice of the White House and chartered a plane to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico to party. Now, 44 of them have tested positive for coronavirus according to a university spokesman.

Perhaps even more alarming is that some of the students took commercial flights home, according to CNN, citing the Austin Public Health Department.

Those who tested positive are now in self-isolation (or at least they're supposed to be).

"Quit being an a**," Texas House Speaker Dennis Bonnen told CNN affiliate KXAN, adding "Get over yourselves. Whether you think this is an issue or not, it is. Whether you think it could affect you or not, it does. The reality of it is, if I'm a college kid who's going to spring break in Mexico, you're affecting a lot of people. Grow up."

Dozens of other passengers from the chartered flight are being monitored, public health officials said.

"The virus often hides in the healthy and is given to those who are at grave risk of being hospitalized or dying," Austin-Travis County Interim Health Authority Dr. Mark Escott said in a statement. "While younger people have less risk for complications, they are not immune from severe illness and death from COVID-19."

The local public health department and UT Health UT Health Austin and University Health Services have contacted all of the passengers on the plane using flight manifests from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The University of Texas at Austin is working to help public health officials. -CNN

 University officials are now scrambling to assist Austin Public Health to trace the students' contacts, according to university spokesman J.B. Bird, who added "The incident is a reminder of the vital importance of taking seriously the warnings of public health authorities on the risks of becoming infected with COVID-19 and spreading it to others."

University president Gregory L. Fenves has urged students to practice good judgement and think about how their actions affect others.

"(It) is our responsibility to follow local, state and national public health orders, and use good judgment during this crisis," Fenves said in a statement Wednesday. "Our conduct and the decisions we make have direct ramifications on our own health and the health of everyone in our city and beyond. We must do everything we can to limit the spread of this virus -- the consequences of reckless actions at this time could not be clearer."