The Allegheny County health department is working on an order to prevent alcohol from being consumed inside bars and restaurants by Tuesday at 5 p.m., due to the county’s recent spike in COVID-19 cases, according to a release.
“For the first time since COVID-19 cases were confirmed in the state, Allegheny County led the state in the number of new COVID-19 cases,” said County Executive Rich Fitzgerald.
“We’re going the wrong direction. While most residents and businesses have been following the rules, these requirements and mitigation measures address the hot spots that have been identified during case investigations. These are severe steps, but we have to take steps now to limit the community spread that endangers those who are older, high-risk or otherwise immuno-compromised.”
The order would restrict all on-premise alcohol consumption at bars and restaurants within the county, the release adds.
Fitzgerald said at a press conference Sunday that bars would be closed. WPXI reports that county officials later clarified that bars, like restaurants, will be allowed to remain open, they just can’t sell alcohol to be consumed on-site.
“As the director of the Allegheny County Health Department, it is my duty to protect the health and safety of all Allegheny County residents and while we’ve taken significant steps to track and reduce the spread of this virus, we are still seeing significant increases,” said Health Department Director Dr. Debra Bogen.
“We’re taking these steps today to further protect the health and safety of all residents through my authority under the Pennsylvania Disease Prevention and Control Law.”