PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — On this 4th of July weekend many people are expected to make their way to the Oregon coast. Beaches and most restaurants are open but the spike in coronavirus cases remains a concern.
So if you’re planning to celebrate the holiday along the coast, bring a mask and avoid congregating in large groups. It’s the same message that’s been with us since the pandemic began, but officials said these simple precautions can help prevent the spread.
Clatsop County Community Relations Coordinator, Tom Bennett said there’s concern that this 4th of July holiday could be a repeat of what happened Memorial Day, when it comes to large crowds along the coast.
Bennett said the number of coronavirus cases in Clatsop County just hit 50 — which may not sound like a lot but the county doesn’t want that number to increase.
“It’s not a large number, but we are not a large county and so we don’t have the medical facilities to really handle a large outbreak, so that’s why it’s so important for visitors to keep that in mind and to do everything they can to prevent the spread,” Bennett said. “It’s that balancing act of wanting to give our businesses the opportunity to host customers, while doing it in a safe way that will not put anybody at risk.”
Dooger’s Seafood and Grill manager, Carnegie Wiese says an outdoor dining patio was added just a few weeks ago. He says the Seaside restaurant is doing its part to keep customers safe, so he hopes that others will do the same.
“People are coming to the coast and– I mean what we can say in our small community that– if you are feeling sick stay home and if you are feeling okay and wanting to come out please follow the protocol,” Wiese said.
Further down the coast, Lincoln County just got placed on Oregon Governor Kate Brown’s “watch list.”
“On June 1st we had 16 cases and now today, June 30th we have 312. These numbers are shocking and should be taken seriously,” health officials said in a video posted on Friday to the Lincoln County YouTube page.
As of July 2nd, the Oregon Health Authority reported that Lincoln County now has a total of 327 COVID-19 cases. County health officials, there, say the virus is community spread and are emphasizing the wearing of face covering and social distancing, while also reminding others to limit unnecessary travel, if possible.
Bennett said if you do come to the coast this holiday weekend — just make sure you take the necessary steps to protect yourself and others.