Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak is ordering a “statewide pause” for at least the next three weeks, which will require Nevadans and visitors to wear a mask at all times — indoors or outdoors — if in the presence of someone who is not part of their immediate household.
In addition, occupancy at both indoor and outdoor restaurants and bars will be reduced to 25% and no more than four people will be allowed at one table. The new rules go into effect on Tuesday.
“I know the majority of our bars and restaurants are doing their best, but these settings are proven to be high risk because they allow the opportunity for people to remove their face coverings in indoor settings around people outside of their household. That’s how the virus spreads,” the Democratic governor said.
“As of today, 13 of 17 of our counties are flagged for elevated risk of transmission. In the beginning of October, only two counties were flagged,” Sisolak announced at a press conference on Sunday. “Our statewide positivity rate is at a record 16.5 percent, and as I mentioned, we’ve surpassed 2,000 deaths.”
Sisolak said the infection rate is at “wildfire levels.”
“All available models indicate that Nevada is in a ‘red zone’ and our health experts anticipate continued case growth based on current trends,” he said. “In fact, 10% of all COVID cases recorded in Nevada since the beginning of the pandemic were reported in the last seven days. Every minute, a Nevadan is diagnosed with COVID-19.”
The Democrat also said hospitals are suffering with shortages of staff. “We are on a rapid trajectory that threatens to overwhelm our health care system, our frontline health workers, and your access to care,” Sisolak added. “So it’s time to act.”
Along with reduced occupancy at restaurants and bars, museums, art galleries, libraries, zoos and aquariums, arcades, racetracks, bowling alleys, and amusement and theme parks must also limit visitors to 25% of capacity, Fox News reported. “Retail, including indoor malls, will not have to change their capacity during the Statewide Pause and can continue operating at 50%. Retail and grocery stores of more than 50,000 square feet must have employees at all public entrances counting patrons.”
Brothels, meanwhile, will remain closed.
Earlier this month, California Gov. Gavin Newsom, a Democrat, ordered strict new regulations for his state.
Newsom put 41 of the state’s 58 counties in the strictest “purple” stage of the four-tiered monitoring system. The counties include the most populous in the nation, Los Angeles, along with San Diego, Alameda, and Orange counties. San Francisco recently fell into the red category, which is the second-most severe. An estimated 94% of Californians, or approximately 37 million people, reside in areas under the state’s most restrictive reopening tier.
“We are sounding the alarm,” Newsom said in a statement. “California is experiencing the fastest increase in cases we have seen yet – faster than what we experienced at the outset of the pandemic or even this summer. The spread of COVID-19, if left unchecked, could quickly overwhelm our health care system and lead to catastrophic outcomes.”
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