Gov. Roy Cooper extended Phase 3 safety guidelines for COVID-19 for three more weeks during a press release on Wednesday. He also asked for local governments to help in preventing the spread of the virus.
“We hope that greater enforcement, strong community leadership and more people doing the right things can lower these numbers,” Cooper said.
Phase 3 guidelines, released on Sept. 30, include:
- 7% capacity for outdoor venues with more than 10,000 seats
- 30% capacity or 100 individuals, whichever is less, for small outdoor venues
- 30% capacity or 100 individuals, whichever is less, for indoor movie theaters and conference centers
- 30% capacity for outdoor amusement parks
- 30% capacity for bars, outdoors only
- 25 individuals for indoor mass gatherings and 50 for outdoor
- 11 p.m. curfew on alcohol sales, including bars
In North Carolina, Thursday and Friday saw the highest daily number of COVID-19 cases since the start of the pandemic, according to Mandy Cohen, secretary of the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS).
In response, DHHS and the N.C. Department of Public Safety sent letters on Tuesday to several counties with 300 or more COVID-19 cases and a red zone designation by the White House task force recommending stricter guidelines, including a civil fine, establishing lower mass gathering limits, curtailing the sale of alcohol and limiting restaurant service.
Columbus County did not receive this letter, according to the county manager’s office.