Severity: Warning Alert

Transportation: As of Sept. 15, officials in Oklahoma, US, maintain certain restrictions, update COVID-19 risk-monitoring system in multiple counties.

Alert Begins 15 Sep 2020 02:57 PM UTC
Alert Expires 06 Oct 2020 11:59 PM UTC

  • Incident: COVID-19 restrictions
  • Location(s): Oklahoma (map)
  • Time Frame: Indefinite
  • Impact: Business disruptions likely

As of Sept. 15 authorities in Oklahoma are maintaining certain restrictions and continuing Phase 3 of the state's economic recovery plan due to coronavirus disease (COVID-19). Additionally, officials updated the state's four-tier risk-monitoring system, which offers guidelines to each county depending on COVID-19 activity within each jurisdiction.

The system goes from green, the lowest risk level of contagion, to red, the highest risk level, with different guidelines per level. However, it does not impose additional restrictions. On the green level, authorities advise residents to follow basic precautions, such as maintaining social distancing, using a face mask when social distancing is not possible, and washing hands frequently. As of Sept. 15, only Ellis and Roger Mills counties are on the green level.

On the yellow level, residents should limit interactions in gatherings of more than 50 people and increase precautions in traveling. As of Sept. 15, there are 30 counties are on the yellow level, including Canadian, Comanche, Delaware, Grady, and Wagoner counties. On the orange level, businesses should increase sanitation procedures. Residents should wear face masks whenever in public, limit travel to essential travel, and avoid gatherings with anyone from outside their household. As of Sept. 15, there are 45 counties on the orange level, including several of the most populated counties in the state: Oklahoma, Tulsa, Cleveland, Rogers, Payne, Muskogee, and Creek. No county is at the red level.

Under Phase 3 of the state's economic recovery plan, which has been in place since June 1, all businesses may operate without specific capacity limits, provided they enhance sanitation procedures, close common areas where employees may gather, ensure proper distances between customers and workers, and avoid gatherings. Employers should screen workers' temperatures and monitor for possible symptoms, bar symptomatic employees from work, and provide appropriate protective equipment; recommended guidelines may vary by industry.

Officials could amend the order in short notice, depending on local disease activity in the coming weeks.

Emphasize basic health precautions, especially frequent handwashing with soap and water, or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are unavailable. Practice good coughing/sneezing etiquette (i.e., covering coughs and sneezes with a disposable tissue, maintaining distance from others, and washing hands). There is no evidence that the influenza vaccine, antibiotics, or antiviral medications will prevent this disease, highlighting the importance of diligent basic health precautions.

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