Severity: Critical Alert

Transportation: Officials in Rhode Island, US, extend current restrictions until Aug. 28 to curb the spread of COVID-19. Gatherings limited to 15 people.

  • Alert Begins: 30 Jul 2020 12:38 PM UTC
  • Alert Expires: 28 Aug 2020 11:59 PM UTC
  • Incident: COVID-19 restrictions
  • Location(s): Rhode Island (map)
  • Time Frame: Indefinite
  • Impact: Travel restrictions, business disruptions

Summary
Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo has extended restrictions to curb the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) through Aug. 28, keeping the state on Phase 3 of its economic recovery plan. Authorities only amended restrictions on social gatherings, reducing the maximum limit of permitted gatherings from 25 to 15. However, the limit for catered events, such as weddings, remains at 50 people indoors and 100 people outdoors. Any event with more than 100 attendants must submit plans to state authorities to request for special permission.

The rest of the restrictions will remain unchanged until at least Aug. 28. Travelers entering from states with 5 percent or greater positivity rate of COVID-19 must self-quarantine for 14 days upon arrival, unless they have a negative COVID-19 test taken within the 72 hours prior to their arrival in Rhode Island. As of July 30, travelers from Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming, as well as from Puerto Rico, must follow these guidelines. Authorities will update the list of impacted states and territories every week. Travelers arriving in Rhode Island from outside the US are also required to self-quarantine for 14 days.

As part of Phase 3, all indoor settings, including office-based businesses, retail stores, restaurants, and other customer-facing businesses, may allow one person per every 9.3 square meters (100 square feet), or allow up to 66 percent of their maximum capacity. Outdoor businesses can operate following social distancing measures, enhanced sanitation procedures, and the gathering limits.

Authorities have ordered the use of protective face coverings indoors and outdoors, whenever social distancing measures cannot be maintained.

Transport and business disruptions may persist even as restrictions are eased. Officials could amend the orders on short notice, depending on local disease activity in the coming weeks.

Advice
Avoid all nonessential operations in the areas impacted by the measures. Confirm appointments. Remain courteous and cooperative if approached and questioned by law enforcement officers.

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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