Los Angeles quarantine extended for summer: what do California residents prepare for
Los Angeles County orders to stay at home “with certainty” will be extended for the next 3 months, health director Barbara Ferrer admitted during a May 12 meeting of the board of observers, writes LA Times. She later added that even if quarantine is extended for the whole summer, restrictions will “gradually relax” as part of a five-step state plan.
“We are guided by scientific evidence and information that safely drives us forward - in a way that allows us to guarantee effective measures to distance and fight the infection,” Ferrer said, adding that the county is counting on residents to follow orders to be able to relax restrictions.
Ferrer emphasized that further progress will depend on efforts to contain the virus. Los Angeles County is currently the epicenter of coronavirus in California.
“We hope that using the data, we will be able to gradually remove the restrictions over the next three months,” she said. But without widely available coronavirus testing or quick home tests, it seems unlikely that social distance guidelines and home stay orders can be completely relaxed.
On May 12, Los Angeles County Superintendent Catherine Barger also hoped that quarantine would begin to soften in the coming weeks.
“I look forward to discovering more in the area as soon as it is safe, in collaboration with our health experts, community leaders, businesses and residents, using best practices to ensure our overall health and well-being. These decisions will be based on the latest scientific evidence and information gathered, ”she said in a statement. “I’m sure that the better our residents continue to abide by the rules, the sooner we can return to normal.”
In the coming days, beaches will open - but in the sand you can only be with a protective accessory on your face, and you are not allowed to sunbathe. Only active recreation is allowed - surfing, running, walking and swimming. Chairs, umbrellas and any other accessories that usually dot the coastline are not permitted.
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti reiterated Barger’s comments, saying the city will continue to adjust orders so that it can gradually expand its operations and business.
“We will not leave COVID-19 behind, we are learning to live with it - and we will continue to take balanced steps towards a new, safer reality in the coming days and weeks,” he said.
On May 12, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the country's leading infectious disease expert, warned US Senate members that loosening restrictions too quickly could lead to a new outbreak. According to Fauci, a 14-day decline in the number of cases is the main guideline that states should consider before opening.
In Los Angeles County, confirmed cases of COVID-19 and mortality continue to rise. On May 12, the district announced new 961 positive results for the virus and 45 new deaths, resulting in a death toll of 1613. Mortality in the Los Angeles County is more than half of the total number in the state. About 253 of the 000 million residents of the county were tested for the virus, and approximately 10% - over 11 - were infected. Officials encourage all residents, even those without symptoms, to be screened.
In some neighboring counties that ease restrictions, the number of cases of illness and mortality also continues to increase. Riverside County, where officials voted on May 8 to abolish masking requirements, reported 150 new cases of illness and 12 new deaths. In Orange County, another 45 cases and one death were recorded on May 12, the number of hospitalizations increased to 230.
In Santa Clara County, which was once the hottest spot in the state, the number of cases has declined. Officials reported two additional cases and the absence of deaths as of May 11. Santa Clara is one of six counties in the Bay Area where orders to stay at home have been extended.
On May 12, California Governor Gavin Newsome announced rules for restaurants to renew service. According to the state website covid19.ca.gov, the opening of offices is also included in county plans, approved “for faster passage through stage 2, during which jobs can be opened,” writes Deadline.
Newsome announced that he was modifying state orders so that individual counties could allow the opening of shopping centers in the form of self-delivery. The order also allows the reopening of some offices if remote work is not possible.
“It’s not yet possible to say that we are out of danger,” Newsom recalled.
The list of Phase 2 sectors that may qualify for opening as part of the easing of quarantine includes dine-in restaurants, open-air museums, shopping centers and all retail stores, all office jobs, all manufacturing and logistics industries that support retail . Bars will remain closed.
Phase 3 will include the opening of movie theaters and large gatherings such as church services.
Newsom supported the decision of Barbara Ferrer to extend quarantine restrictions in Los Angeles.
“There should be no pressure on local officials in Los Angeles or elsewhere,” he said, “their conditions are very different from some of the rural districts.”
Prior to opening, state authorities declare that all facilities must:
- perform a detailed risk assessment and implementation of a protection plan for a specific site of activity;
- Train employees on how to limit the spread of COVID-19, including how to check for symptoms and stay at home if they are;
- implement individual control and verification measures;
- implement disinfection protocols;
- implement the principles of physical distance.
Newsom said that the state has already conducted more than 1 million tests for COVID-19, which he called an important milestone. The governor has announced six new testing sites for rural areas. The governor also said that Butte and El Dorado counties are the first local regions that are allowed to enter the second phase of the opening.
On the eve of this speech, at a coronavirus briefing on May 11, Newsom said he and the leaders of Oregon, Washington, Colorado and Nevada, including the governors and legislative speakers of each state, are urging the federal government to provide an additional trillions of dollars to help these states. He added that most of the assistance will go to public security officials such as police, firefighters, and schools.
Newsom said this help was needed, in part because he expected unemployment to rise above 20% to 22-25%.
The governor emphasized that “over 70% of the economy” in California is now open.
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