FRANKFORT, Ky. — Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear plans to close bars for two weeks and further reduce restaurant capacity in an effort to curb the COVID-19 spike in the commonwealth, according to reports.
The Kentucky Restaurant Association reported on social media that freestanding bars will close at 5 p.m. Tuesday and indoor dining capacity will be restricted to 25% of capacity until Aug. 11. Outdoor dining will continue at 100%.
Beshear said he would use his 4 p.m. Monday news briefing to announce new steps following the most recent spike in cases.
“We have worked too long and hard and sacrificed too much to squander the gains we have made in this fight,” Beshear tweeted Monday. “There’s nothing more important to me than protecting the lives of Kentuckians.”
Public schools are also on the list of topics Beshear will address, according to media reports.
Kentucky reported its second-highest daily total Saturday with 836 more positive cases of the virus and a daily record of 979 confirmed cases on July 19.
Last week Beshear announced new limits on social gatherings and a travel advisory to combat the escalation of cases. Earlier this month he ordered most people to wear face coverings in public.
“I will not let us become an Alabama, a Florida or an Arizona,” Beshear said at a Sunday news conference. “We’ve got to take proactive steps and that’s what we’re trying to do.”
For most people, the new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some — especially older adults and people with existing health problems — it can cause more severe illness and be fatal.