New bar guidelines issued in Mono County amid pandemic

Published: Jun. 30, 2020 at 2:57 PM PDT|Updated: Jun. 30, 2020 at 3:00 PM PDT
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MONO COUNTY, Calif. (KOLO) - New guidelines are in place in Mono County when it comes to operating bars amid the coronavirus pandemic.

County health officer, Dr. Tom Boo, issued a modified order Tuesday, June 30, 2020. It includes the following guidelines:

• Alcohol may be served only to seated customers and consumed only by seated customers. Patrons of restaurants with bars may not be served at the bar and must not stand near the bar. • Customers shall not be seated at bars unless six feet of distancing is maintained between customers, and there is an impermeable barrier (e.g., plexiglass) between customers and staff behind the bar. • All staff of an establishment serving alcohol must wear face coverings at all times which cover the mouth and nose. Surgical masks or N-95 (or higher) respirators are highly recommended. • All other components of State and local guidance for all businesses and for the restaurant/bar/winery sector remain in place, without modification.

“Bars are considered high risk environments for Coronavirus transmission as physical distancing is challenging, face coverings are allowed to be removed while seated, and alcohol consumption tends to disinhibit people and impair judgment which may further increase risk,” said Dr. Boo. “Bars also tend to be loud, making people increase their speaking volume which can expel more virus potentially infecting others.”

Dr. Boo further commented that “Around the country and within the state, bars are being closed in recent weeks as Coronavirus cases rapidly rise. Mono County does not currently have bars operating without an associated restaurant, and we want to decrease the risks associated with operating to try to balance keeping businesses open, and the community safe.”

On June 28, Governor Gavin Newsom issued an order closing bars in seven California counties with the highest rates of transmission.

For more information on Mono County’s COVID-19 response, click here.

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