Bay Area enters shelter-in-place to combat COVID-19

In an escalating attempt to slow the rapid spread of coronavirus cases, seven Bay Area counties are enacting a “shelter in place” order.

Beginning at 12:01 am on Tuesday morning, the order requires all residents of San Francisco, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, San Mateo, Marin, Contra Costa, and Alameda Counties to stay inside their homes and away from others as much as possible for at least the next three weeks, until April 7.

“Temporarily changing our routine is absolutely necessary to slow the spread of this pandemic,” said Dr. Sara Cody, Santa Clara County Public Health Officer.

The order is the most restrictive in the United States with residents encouraged to avoid even the smallest social interactions. Residents of the seven counties are banned from having any non-essential gatherings of any size, in addition to non-essential travel “on foot, bicycle, scooter, automobile, or public transit.”

Grocery stores, gas stations, veterinary services, auto repair shops, hardware and other home supply stores, banks, laundry services, and pharmacies may hold regular store hours; restaurants may remain open but only to provide takeout.

“You can still complete your most essential outings or even engage in outdoor activity, so long as you avoid close contact,” said Dr. Matt Willis, Marin County’s Public Health Officer.

To read the order in full, click here. To see Santa Clara County’s coronavirus information page, click here.