Leaders in the city and county of Dallas Monday ordered all community gatherings to be capped at 50 people and that all bars, lounges, taverns, nightclubs, health clubs and theaters to close as the city combats the spread of COVID-19.
Additionally, all restaurants are ordered to temporarily end dine-in service and offer food for pick-up only via drive-through or take-out.
The moves were announced Monday in separate news conferences by Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins and Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson.
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Johnson said the restrictions go into effect at midnight Tuesday. Jenkins said the order will remain in place until 11 a.m. March 20, though they are already working to extend that date.
The restrictions, which are outlined at the bottom of this article, are among the most aggressive rules put forth among cities and counties in Texas for attempting to minimize the spread of the virus.
The mayor said he was taking the action now because the core responsibility of government is to insure the health, safety and welfare of the community.
The regulations will be enforced by code enforcement and the police, as necessary.
Johnson tweeted Sunday that they were aware of the new CDC guidance that recommend all in-person events involving 50 people or more be called off for the next eight weeks and were discussing further restrictions on community gatherings. That was before an update by President Donald Trump and the Coronavirus Task Force that recommended people not gather in groups larger than 10.
KPRC-TV in Houston reported similar action was taken regarding bars and clubs in Harris County Monday afternoon.
How to Avoid COVID-19 Infection:
The best way to prevent infection is to take precautions to avoid exposure to this virus, which are similar to the precautions you take to avoid the flu. CDC always recommends these everyday actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory viruses, including:
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
*Information shared from the Office of Texas Gov. Greg Abbott