By CBSLA Staff

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – With the holiday weekend approaching amid the ongoing pandemic, health experts are recommending that people stay vigilant and be flexible if plans need to change as a result of COVID-19.

That advice was not lost on Thousand Oaks High School football coach Evan Yabu, who is currently on a 10-day quarantine after being in close contact last week with someone who tested positive for coronavirus.

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Footage from Thousand Oaks H.S. Football Coach Evan Yabu who’s monitoring his team via drone while in quarantine due to a COVID-19 exposure. Sept. 2, 2021.

Coach Yabu has been using a drone, launched from a nearby neighborhood, to watch his team practice on the field.

“They think it’s hilarious. I’ll zoom by and get up real close to some of them sometimes and they’ll all wave, they’ll jump. They wanna be in the camera,” Yabu said.

The high school coach said that the distance, in a way, has been helpful.

“I can literally fly from one individual grouping, over the stands and on to the backfield and see something going on. It makes me feel like I was a more effective observer this week on the drone than I am in person,”  he said.

Yabu added that the drone is simply another pivot that he, like so many other coaches and educators, has had to make during the pandemic.

“Adaptability has definitely been the name of the game when it comes to the last year,” the coach said.

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Going into the busy holiday weekend, usually the last hurrah of the summer, officials say they are concerned about the spread of coronavirus, especially as the highly contagious Delta variant remains dominant.

“Yes, we’re very concerned,” said Dr. Daisy Dodd, a Kaiser Permanente Infectious Disease Specialist. “Any time you have a gathering…I mean, let’s face it, we’ve been dealing with this a long time. And we want to have fun. We want to be with our family and friends, but we do have to keep in mind precaution.”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has recommended that non-vaccinated individuals stay at home this Labor Day Weekend, and Dr. Dodd suggests that even vaccinated people should think about where they get together.

LA County Public Health Dept. report for Thursday, Sept. 1, 2021.

“So, perhaps have a gathering outside, in the backyard, in the open, diminishes capacity of transmitting the virus from person to person,” Dr. Dodd said.

The latest LA County numbers seem promising — a 16% week-to-week decline in cases and an 11% decline in deaths – but Public Health Director Dr. Barbara Ferrer’s office is stopping short of predicting a plateau. In fact, the Delta variant has them preparing for the chance of yet another surge in the next few weeks.

“We are seeing less transmission across the board in general, but because the Delta variant is so capable of infecting lots of people, we still have very high numbers of people getting infected,” Dr. Ferrer said.

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The latest numbers show 65% of LA County residents, aged 12 and older, are fully vaccinated.