Doubts were raised as to what would happen in the Californian desert next week due to California declaring a state of emergency over the Coronavirus outbreak but the event which is likened to be being a ‘fifth Grand Slam’ will go ahead.
There has been a release by tournament director and former top ten player Tommy Haas who have taken advice from Dr. David Agus, Professor of Medicine and Biomedical Engineering at the University of Southern California and Martin Massiello, Executive Vice President & Chief Operating Officer, Eisenhower Health.
The changes have been made with the fans, athletes and everyone involved in the tournaments health and safety the focus.
The changes include:
- More than 250 hand sanitizing stations have been placed throughout the facility
- Players will be required to manage their own towel on court and ball kids will not touch or move player towels. A chair will be placed at the back of the court for them to place their towel on for usage during the match.
- Ball kids will wear gloves
- Restaurant and food supply workers will wear gloves
- Volunteers taking tickets at entrances will wear gloves
- N95 masks are being secured for first aid and health personnel to be prepared for any circumstances that would necessitate the use thereof
- Organized player and fan interaction will be limited at the tournament
- All common areas throughout the facility will be cleaned daily with an antiviral application
- Coordinating with local hospital and CDC approved testing for all individuals with symptoms
There is also an option for fans who have bought tickets via Indian Wells to receive a full refund if they are not sure about attending the event or can request to use their ticket as a credit for 2021 event. This can be done via their website.
At the end of the statement they have also said this:
Further actions are being considered and evaluated on a daily basis in order to continue to ensure the safety of everyone associated with the event. The 2020 BNP Paribas Open is scheduled to proceed as planned.