Governor Ron DeSantis held a press conference in Tallahassee on Tuesday to outline additional measures to quarantine the outbreak of coronavirus and keep it from spreading.
The new proactive orders include closing bars, monitoring the gatherings at beaches and restaurants, and recommending remote learning at all Florida colleges for the remainder of the spring semester.
In the news conference, DeSantis announced that all bars and nightclubs in the state of Florida will be suspended for the next 30 days, with it going into effect at 5 p.m. today.
“We view [congregating] as something that can be problematic for spreading the virus,” DeSantis said.
The governor is also limiting capacities at restaurants, taking a page out of California’s playbook. Restaurants will see their seating capacity reduced by 50 percent, with costumers seated six feet away from one another. Eating establishments will also require restaurant employees to screen before entering the workplace.
He also emphasized takeout and delivery, encouraging Floridians to utilize the service as an alternative to sit-down.
DeSantis also announced that beaches would be monitored to prevent crowds larger than 10 from forming.
Finally, DeSantis recommended colleges and universities transition to online learning for the remainder of the spring semester after four students at the University of Florida tested positive for the COVID-19. One was engaged in international travel and some of the others had exposure to some of the “hotspots” in the United States.
“The goal of that is that the students not stay congregated on campus, but actually return home,” said DeSantis. “We think that will be safer for everybody.”
Today’s announcement comes as the virus continues to spread across the state. As of Tuesday morning, there were 192 confirmed cases across 25 counties. The death toll in Florida is now at 6.