Los Angeles, California Mayor Eric Garcetti issued a new emergency order that bans unnecessary “travel on foot.” The Democratic mayor warns the city is approaching a “devastating tipping point” in their fight against COVID-19.
“Our city is now close to a devastating tipping point, beyond which the number of hospitalized patients would start to overwhelm our hospital system, in turn risking needless suffering and death,” Garcetti wrote in the order. “These unfortunate facts about the spread of COVID-19 in our City mean that we must resume some of the more restrictive measures we instituted in the Spring.”
The order prohibits “all travel, including, without limitation, travel on foot, bicycle, scooter, motorcycle, automobile, or public transit,” with limited exceptions.
Healthcare workers and reporters are allowed to travel, as well as people going to grocery stores, gas stations, and other locations that are considered essential.
Garcetti also ordered all residents living in the city “to remain in their homes,” forcing businesses that require in-person attendance to shut down. Gatherings that include individuals from more than one household are not allowed.
However, the order does have exceptions for some activities. These include “outdoor faith-based services” and people “participating in an in-person outdoor protest while wearing a face covering, maintaining social distancing, and observing the Los Angeles County Protocol for Public Demonstrations.”
Los Angeles County has some of the highest infection rates in the country, beating a city record on Wednesday with LA Public Health confirming 2,439 people hospitalized with COVID. The county’s positivity rate is at 13.0%, compared to the November 1 positivity rate of 3.9%, according to the same report. LA Public Health said the county has nearly 415,000 positive coronavirus cases with a total of 7,740 deaths as of Wednesday.