Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine said during a Monday press conference that the curfew currently placed on the state will need to be extended, although he did not reveal more details.
DeWine imposed a 21-day curfew on Ohio from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. running from November 19 to December 10. The curfew was meant as a “slow down” aimed at curbing the spread of the coronavirus and applied to retail and indoor seating at restaurants. The curfew exempted businesses like restaurants operating on take-out only, pharmacies and grocery stores.
The governor hinted at the extended curfew in a response to a question about its set expiration date.
“Well, no, it will need to be extended,” he said during a Monday press conference. “We’ll talk more about that Thursday, but it will need to be extended.”
DeWine said it is still unclear the impact Thanksgiving gatherings may have on the state’s coronavirus numbers.
“These numbers are just not sustainable, no one thinks they are. Even if we’re flat, we’re filling up our hospitals. We’ve got to try to take this down,” DeWine said. “I think we know what works…Certainly Ohioans are doing better about understanding what the problem is, and I think more and more Ohioans understand that this is a crucial period of time.”
Ohio currently has nearly 450,000 confirmed cases of the coronavirus in the state, with more than 7,500 new cases added on Sunday, according to data from the Covid Tracking Project. There are currently a little more than 5,000 Ohio residents in the hospital, with 274 new hospitalizations on Sunday. The state has also seen more than 6,000 deaths confirmed to be caused by the coronavirus.
DeWine said in the press conference that the state saw more than 9,000 new confirmed cases of the coronavirus on Monday, over the 8,521 cases of the state’s 21-day average. Ohio also had 63 new deaths.
The governor said that it appeared the rate of infections was slowing, but that more effort still needed to be made.
“We think that the curfew, as well as the masking order and the enforcement [of it]…have slowed this rate of increase, but it is still at a much too high level,” DeWine said. “Heads of hospitals have told it is unsustainable at this level. Not only do we have to slow it down from going up, but we have to start taking it down.”
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Jordyn Pair is a reporter with The Ohio Star. Follow her on Twitter at @JordynPair.