WISCASSET — Two Bridges Regional Jail has closed to the public and to non-essential personnel after two people there tested positive for COVID-19, jail officials announced Monday.

One person is a staff member and the other is an inmate, according to Correctional Administrator James Bailey.

Bailey said the jail’s lobby has been closed to the public since March 2020 when the pandemic reached Maine. However, attorneys were allowed to meet with inmates, some of whom were making physical court appearances.

“Now I’m essentially locking down the facility and not allowing anybody from the public to come in, and we’ve notified all the courts and attorneys and can offer video services,” Bailey said. “I just have to limit the exposure to people coming into the facility with face to face contact with inmates.”

The inmate who tested positive has been isolated in one of the jail’s two negative pressure cells designed to contain any virus, Bailey said.

The staff member is quarantining at home. Staff members working the same shift as that employee were tested over the weekend, as were the inmates in the housing unit where he worked. The inmate who tested positive is also part of that same housing unit.

Bailey is still waiting on some of those test results.

Bailey said he also started testing all staff and inmates on Monday.

“I’m hoping we caught it very quickly and we’ve isolated it,” Bailey said, though he expects there will be more cases.
Bailey said the jail had one other COVID-19 case over the Christmas holiday.

The Maine CDC has been notified of the two most recent cases.

Two Bridges will divert new arrestees to Kennebec County Correctional Facility if an additional case linked to the most recent cases is discovered.

Two Bridges serves Sagadahoc and Lincoln counties and is still accepting new inmates from within those counties.
Bailey said the jail won’t board any inmates outside Sagadahoc and Lincoln Counties with the exception of Oxford County.

As of Monday, Two Bridges housed 67 inmates.

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