Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf announced new restrictions on Thursday to battle the spread of the coronavirus in the Commonwealth. The order suspends most large indoor gatherings, indoor social activities including gyms and movie theaters, indoor dining at restaurants, and youth sports, as well as outlining other impacts.
In a speech from his home Thursday afternoon, Governor Wolf set temporary orders effective from Saturday, December 12th at 12:01 am to January 4th at 8 am meant to stop the spread of COVID-19, keep hospitals and frontline healthcare workers from being overwhelmed, and to get Pennsylvania residents through the holidays safely to receive a vaccine in the near future.
The restrictions include: a suspension of all school extracurricular activities and youth sports, a limit on indoor gatherings of 10 people and outdoor gatherings of 50 people, and a suspension of indoor dining at restaurants with curbside to-go dining being encouraged in its place to support small business restaurants. Churches, synagogues, temples, mosques, and other places of worship are excluded from the indoor gathering rule.
Indoor operations will be suspended for social activities including: theaters, movies, concerts, casinos, bowling alleys, private clubs, gyms, and fitness centers. Indoor retail businesses will be limited to 50% capacity.
Wolf said that the work Pennsylvanians do now to slow the spread of COVID-19 is crucial for the Commonwealth to get back to normal. Wolf strongly recommended adhering to the stay-at-home advisory, wearing a mask, social distancing, and avoiding poorly ventilated areas.
The Pennsylvania Department of Health reported an additonal 11,972 positive cases on Wednesday bringing the statewide positive case total to 457,289 with 12,010 deaths since March.
Wolf was recently diagnosed with COVID-19 and has been continuing his duties from his home.