Virginia restores some COVID-19 restrictions, but isolated to Hampton Roads area

Virginia Governor Ralph Northam raised the specter of new COVID-19 restrictions for the Commonwealth over the weekend after health officials sounded the alarm over troubling data.

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But the ominous tone of the warning dissipated during a Tuesday news conference when the Governor issued a series of restrictions to be implemented solely in the Hampton Roads area.

In stark contrast to the rest of the state’s 6 percent case positivity rate, a 10.8 percent positivity rate in Hampton Roads drew particular concern from the state’s health officials.

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Northam announced a new order effective at midnight on Thursday that will close restaurants at midnight and forbid alcohol consumption after 10 p.m. In addition, restaurants must close at midnight.

The governor said that order would “effectively” ban bars.
In addition, the order restricts restaurant capacity to 50 percent, and limits gatherings to 50 people.

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The governor did not indicate that similar measures could be put in place elsewhere, indicating that Northern Virginia was showing particularly promising metrics.

Shortly after the novel coronavirus’ arrival in Virginia, it quickly established a hot spot in the state’s most densely populated region in suburban D.C.

Nevertheless, the governor did note that officials will continue to follow the data in order to determine which regulations could be implemented to curb concerning trends.