The governors in five states — California, Ohio, Illinois, Massachusetts and Washington — closed bars, restaurants and wineries in an effort to slow the spread of coronavirus. In other parts of the country, mayors of major cities ordered similar restrictions.
In Ohio, Gov. Mike DeWine said bars and restaurants can stay open for carry-out and delivery but “what we can’t have is people congregating and seated.”
“I’m aware that this will impact many, many good workers,” DeWine wrote on Twitter. “I can’t tell you how sorry I am, but we will work to mitigate the suffering. It is our goal for everyone to get through this.
“Every day we delay, more people will die.”
In California, Gov. Gavin Newsom said all bars, wineries, brew pubs and nightclubs should close, and asked that those over 65 self-isolate. A few hours after Newsom’s suggestion, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said he was closing bars, restaurants, nightclubs and “entertainment venues,” effective at midnight Sunday until at least March 31.
Across the country, counties in some states have taken similar precautions, all in an effort to stop people from congregating and unknowingly passing along the virus.
Illinois also shut down bars and restaurants to dine-in customers through March 30, a day after thousands gathered in downtown Chicago to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day.