Ohio governor extends overnight curfew into 2021
By ANDREW WELSH-HUGGINS and JOHN SEEWER, Associated Press
COLUMBUS, Dec. 10, 2020 (AP): Ohio's overnight curfew will be
extended into the new year, Gov. Mike DeWine announced Thursday
as he urged residents to do everything possible to protect
themselves and others from the coronavirus during the Christmas
The curfew first enacted last month will continue to run from 10
p.m. until 5 a.m. until Jan. 2, 2021 the governor said. The
curfew restricts movement outside homes but allows multiple
exceptions for work, grocery shopping, medical emergencies and
other trips. Some epidemiologists have questioned its
``We simply cannot afford—on the very eve of a safe and
effective vaccination—to further overwhelm our hospitals and
healthcare providers with a holiday tsunami,`` DeWine said,
calling these next few weeks ``an inherently dangerous time.''
Ohio is set to receive its first supplies of vaccination on
Holiday religious services
such as Roman Catholic midnight Mass would not be
affected by the curfew, the governor said. Upcoming games by the
Cincinnati Bengals, Cleveland Browns, Columbus Crew and the
Cincinnati Bearcats football team are also exempted, but DeWine
asked fans to limit watch parties to their own households.
During DeWine's Thursday briefing, he invited 12 medical experts
from around Ohio to highlight protective steps people can take,
from washing hands, wearing masks, keeping celebrations small,
limiting travel and not eating or drinking with non-household
Even during the pandemic, people are still having heart attacks,
strokes and getting in car accidents, said certified nurse
practitioner Jennifer Duncan, who urged people to celebrate
Christmas at home only with immediate family members.
``If our emergency rooms are overwhelmed with COVID-19 patients,
it makes it harder for them to take care of you or a loved one
if you present to an emergency room with a different type of
emergency,'' said Duncan, who practices at Adena Family Medicine
and Pediatrics in Jackson County in southeastern Ohio.
Ohio's seven-day rolling average of daily new cases has risen
over the past two weeks from 9,131 new cases per day on Nov. 25
to 11,741 new cases per day on Dec. 9, according to an
Associated Press analysis of data provided by The COVID Tracking
The state's seven-day rolling average of daily deaths has risen
over the past two weeks from 64 deaths per day on Nov. 25 to 74
deaths per day on Dec. 9, the analysis found.
Summit County in northeastern Ohio, which includes Akron,
recorded 130 of its 420 deaths from the virus in the roughly
four weeks since early November and that total could be higher
because of paperwork delays, said county health commissioner
Donna Skoda. The county is now averaging 4.5 deaths per day over
the past week.
``In October, we had days go by where we didn't have anybody
die. Not now. Now it's fairly regular,'' Skoda said.
Akron's City Council last month adopted a rule limiting guests
at private gatherings to six people from outside the home, and
county health officials this week recommended that schools stop
competing in sports and consider holding only virtual classes.
But the county's hospitals remain stretched to capacity and
there isn't enough testing for people who are asymptomatic,
It's doubtful there will be any new countywide mandates, because
they've seen that those only work as statewide orders, she said.
Her office found that when Akron put limits on private
gatherings, people simply moved their family gatherings and
parties outside the city, she said.
``Its almost like the more you mandate, the more resistance you
get,'' Skoda said.
Seewer reported from Toledo.