Yolo County issued the order on Friday, as expected, to require wearing a face covering in public. At the same time, it has amended the current Shelter in Place order to allow certain activities to resume.
The current Shelter in Place order will end on May 1, but will be extended with the amendments.
Under the face covering order, people will be required to wear such coverings when they wait in lines, shop at a store, pick up food, are on or waiting for public transit, are in a taxi or rideshare vehicle, are seeking healthcare, go inside public facilities, or work at jobs that interact with the public.
Face coverings are not required to be worn at home or in a car either alone or with members of their own housing—and children under two should not wear one due to risk of suffocation. Face coverings are also not required outdoors or engaging in recreational activity.
They do note that “people must comply with social distancing during these activities, including maintaining at least 6 feet of distance from other people. People should also have a face covering readily accessible.”
Also residents with health conditions whose medical doctor has advised against wearing a face covering and can provide documentation are not required to wear face coverings.
The county release notes, “Residents are still required to stay at home as much as possible, practice social distancing of at least 6 feet, and use other public health measures, such as frequent hand washing, covering coughs, and staying home when sick.”
Businesses must require their employees and other “volunteers to wear a face covering at the workplace and when performing work off-site.”
They also should advise “customers about the need to wear a face covering, including posting signs and advising those in line or in the store.” They should take “reasonable steps to keep people who are not wearing a face covering from entering their business” and “refuse service to anyone not wearing a face covering.”
The release notes, “Individual violators are unlikely to be cited,” however, they do expect “essential businesses and other enterprises will be expected to enforce this order.”
The county states, “Everyone has an opportunity to contribute to public health and the welfare of our community by following this health order. Individuals that choose not to wear face coverings may encounter difficulties such as being refused access to public transit and essential businesses.”
Yolo County has amended the current Shelter in Place order to allow certain activities “that have been assessed to be low-risk for the spread of COVID-19.”
These include: golf courses, gun and archery, boat ramps, and fishing.
However, they note: “Each of these activities are not strictly prohibited by the State Order. County staff and law enforcement will closely monitor outdoor activities over the first 14 days to ensure adherence to the public health order. It must be noted that any and all activities, dates, and/or roll backs may be altered at any stage if there are indications of an increase in public health risk due to these activities.”
Most importantly, “Gatherings (are) still not allowed.”
The dashboard shows Yolo County with a relatively flat rate of increases in cases. The current total as of 5 pm on April 24, was 157 cases countywide. There were 31 new from April 17 to April 24.
The number of deaths is at 13, relatively high for the number of cases, but six of those reported earlier this week were at one nursing home facility. The public should be wary, though, of those numbers because officially there have been just 1694 tests performed.
In Davis, the total number is 18 cases with two of them resulting in hospitalization.
—David M. Greenwald reporting