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San Luis Obispo County orders residents to shelter in homes

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SAN LUIS OBISPO COUNTY, Calif. - San Luis Obispo County residents will be ordered to shelter in their homes beginning Thursday.

The order was made by San Luis Obispo County Emergency Services Director Wade Horton with cooperation by all seven incorporated cities in the county.

The order begins at 5 p.m. Thursday and will remain in place until further notice. The County said the order could last 30 days, but the order will be reevaluated in two weeks.

The county is hoping to reduce the spread of COVID-19 through these mandatory home quarantines.

"The health and safety of our community is our top priority. The actions we take today will help get us back to normal as soon as possible," Horton said in a press release. "We made the decision to preserve our health care system and ensure that we have the capacity to care for the sickest of the sick during this pandemic."

Essential government operations and functions are exempt and essential local businesses are encouraged to remain open.

Essential businesses include grocery stores, gas stations, banks and more.

All public gatherings outside of homes is strictly prohibited, county officials said.

Earlier on Wednesday, San Luis Obispo city ordered bars to close and restricted restaurants to delivery or carryout orders only.

The county said these guidelines are in line with similar restrictions throughout the state. Particularly vulnerable residents in Ventura County were ordered to remain home on Tuesday.

"We must act aggressively to contain the continued spread of COVID-19 in our community," Horton said.

Violating the public health order may result in misdemeanor charges and a fine.

During the county's daily COVID-19 press briefing, SLO County Public Health Officer Dr. Penny Borenstein said an additional person has tested positive for the coronavirus. The person was only identified as a South County resident in their 40s with a pre-existing medical condition.

That brings the total number of confirmed cases up to seven.

Dr. Borenstein added all seven of the individuals that have tested positive for the virus are in isolation at home and are recovering.

Horton also announced he has authorized an emergency purchase of 100 ventilators at a cost of $500,000.

The timetable for those to arrive is unclear.

He added the county is currently working with Dignity Health and Tenet Health, the two largest healthcare providers in SLO County, to identify supplemental care sites if needed.

In addition to the shelter at home orders, Horton announced that evictions by landlords would be suspended at any rental property in San Luis Obispo County. The county says these guidelines are in line with an executive order issued by Gov. Newsom.

For additional information, visit ReadySLO.org. For the San Luis Obispo County Public Health hotline call 805-788-2903. This is a recorded line that is updated regularly.


Article Topic Follows: San Luis Obispo County
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Travis Schlepp

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