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Hampton Roads area coronavirus restrictions will be lifted Friday

Welcome back to Phase 3

Beachgoers crowd the shoreline along the oceanfront Monday June 29, 2020, in Virginia Beach, Va. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)
Beachgoers crowd the shoreline along the oceanfront Monday June 29, 2020, in Virginia Beach, Va. (AP Photo/Steve Helber) (Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

HAMPTON ROADS, Va. – At 12 a.m. Friday, the Hampton Roads area will return to Phase 3 with the rest of Virginia.

Gov. Ralph Northam announced Thursday that “due to significantly improved health metrics in the Eastern Region,” localities in Hampton Roads can once again shift back to Phase 3.

The region’s targeted COVID-19 restrictions went into effect nearly six weeks ago on July 31 and included:

  • A ban on gatherings of more than 50 people
  • A reduction in indoor dining to 50 percent capacity
  • A requirement that restaurants close at midnight and stop the sale of alcohol after 10 p.m.

The impacted localities include cities of Virginia Beach, Chesapeake, Norfolk, Suffolk, Portsmouth, Hampton, Williamsburg, Newport News, Poquoson, James City County and York County.

As of Sept. 9, the percent positivity rate for PCR tests in the Eastern Region is 6.7 percent and has been decreasing for 12 days, according to Northam.

Hospitalizations, including COVID-19 intensive care unit hospitalizations, have been declining for approximately three weeks, and the current rate of emergency room admissions is steadily decreasing.


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