San Francisco health officials extended the district’s stay-at-home order indefinitely Thursday as coronavirus cases rose and outdoor restaurants and a host of other businesses remained closed.
Individuals traveling to the county from outside the Bay Area must be quarantined for 10 days upon arrival, while gyms and personal care services, as well as outdoor restaurants, museums, and entertainment centers such as roller skating rinks must remain closed until the order is canceled.
The decision came as California had its worst coronavirus surge since the pandemic began, and a day after southern California health officials identified a more contagious strain of COVID-19. Given that intensive care unit capacity is unlikely to shift significantly in the coming weeks – and in anticipation of even more cases due to holiday gatherings – extending the order is the safest way forward, said Grant Colfax, Breed and Health Officer by Mayor London Breed, on Thursday.
“We have proactively kept order at home and quarantine on travel to protect the Franciscans and in the hope that by acting quickly we can flatten the curve and reopen it faster,” Breed said in an explanation. “It seems to be working, but we need more time to realize that we are going in the right direction and that the December break is not throwing us back. There are glimmers of hope and now is not the time to let up. “
The most recent contract was awarded nationwide on December 3 and regionally strengthened two weeks later by the state when hospital capacity in the Bay Area fell below 15%. Although the state could try to overturn the order on Jan. 7, infection rates and intensive care unit capacity suggest it is unlikely, Breed said.
Retail businesses such as malls, hardware stores, and convenience stores may have 20% occupancy, while standalone grocery stores may have 35% occupancy. Low-contact retail – such as electronics and shoe repair shops – may only be operated in connection with the delivery on the roadside.
Small outdoor gatherings are allowed, but only with one household and a maximum of 12 people or two people from two separate households. We strongly advise against unnecessary travel.