All public and private gatherings with people outside a single household will be prohibited for three weeks in Los Angeles County starting Monday to curb an unprecedented spread of coronavirus, the Department of Public Health announced in a news release.
“As new Covid-19 cases remain at alarming levels and the number of people hospitalized continue to increase, a temporary Los Angeles County health officer order will be issued to require additional safety measures across sectors,” the county's health department said Friday.
The order comes days after the county reported a record number of new Covid-19 infections, the highest number of deaths in months, and increased hospitalizations.
County health officials are urging all residents to stay home as much as possible and to wear face coverings when they are outside, even when exercising at parks and beaches.
While beaches, trails, and parks remain open, only gatherings from a single household will be allowed. Under the new order, playgrounds and cardrooms will also be closed.
According to the news release, the maximum occupancy for essential businesses will be reduced to 30%. Occupancy will be shrink to 20% for nonessential businesses, personal care services, and libraries. Businesses operating outdoors, including fitness centers, zoos, botanical gardens, and batting cages, will be reduced to 50% maximum capacity.
The new health order will be in effect until Dec. 20.
Voluntary compliance: The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said in a statement to CNN that it will not enforce the order.
“Since the first Stay at Home Order was issued in March of this year, we have focused on education and voluntary compliance, with enforcement measures being an extreme last resort,” the statement said.
“We trust in the community and rely on people to assess risk and take precautions as appropriate,” they added.