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Entire Oregon Coast Under New COVID Restrictions; Hotels, Beaches Unaffected

Published 12/17/20 at 5:25 AM PDT
By Oregon Coast Beach Connection staff

Entire Oregon Coast Under New COVID Restrictions; Hotels, Beaches Unaffected

(Florence, Oregon) – All of the Oregon coast is now in the “extreme risk” category for COVID-19, after five new counties were elevated by the State of Oregon earlier this week. The new designation for Clatsop, Tillamook, Lincoln, Coos and Curry counties to the highest risk level for spreading the disease means many types of businesses in the tourism industry will have to drastically change or even close entirely.

Among the closures include all museums and aquariums, which left the two remaining aquariums that were open – Oregon Coast Aquarium in Newport and Seaside Aquarium – forced to close again. The changes go into effect December 18 with both facilities closing then.

The changes, however, do not affect hotels or access to beaches.

Two other coastal counties – Douglas and Lane – had already been in the extreme risk category. Those included the towns of Reedsport and Florence, among others.

According to state health guidelines, restaurants in high risk counties can only provide food to-go and outdoor seating. Unlike inland eateries such as in Portland, where outdoor seating has helped many businesses get through the tougher restrictions, coastal restaurants are subject to much harsher weather conditions. It’s unclear which – if any – restaurants on the Oregon coast will be able to provide such seating as any tents would likely get blown away at some point.

There is no major change in Oregon coast hotels and rentals, which have already had some limitations since the summer.

Data on infection case numbers is gathered from around the state and then reviewed every two weeks. This time around, each of the newly-elevated counties had shown significant increases. Another review will take place later this month and reassess each county.

State health experts were bracing for a major outbreak after Thanksgiving, but they were surprised to find no such major surge hit the state.

See the state's official COVID page for more.














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