AUSTIN, TX (CelebrityAccess) — Texas Gov. Greg Abbott on Friday took a step back from the state’s re-opening plans and announced a mandatory closure of all of the state’s bars as of noon on Friday afternoon.
“At this time, it is clear that the rise in cases is largely driven by certain types of activities, including Texans congregating in bars,” Abbott said in a news release announcing the decision. “The actions in this executive order are essential to our mission to swiftly contain this virus and protect public health.”
Gov. Abbott’s order also included banning all outdoor gatherings of more than 100 people, unless they have been approved by local officials and limited restaurants in the state to operate at 50% capacity.
Texas in recent days has become an epicenter for the spread of the virus, with 5,996 new cases reported in the state on Thursday.
Yesterday, Abbott took extraordinary measures to free up hospital capacity to deal with the surge, and ordered a ban on elective surgeries in four of the state’s biggest counties: Bexar, Travis, Dallas and Harris.
Abbott sought to free up hospital space for coronavirus patients by banning elective surgeries in four of the state’s biggest counties: Bexar, Travis, Dallas and Harris.
“As I said from the start, if the positivity rate rose above 10%, the State of Texas would take further action to mitigate the spread of COVID-19,” he said during a press conference on Friday.