Face covering required in several Bay Area counties in California, as COVID-19 cases increase

indica News Bureau-

As the coronavirus cases increase rapidly in the Bay Area counties and cities, health officers in several counties and cities have made it mandatory for citizens to cover their faces with masks while stepping out of the home. So far the area has reported more than 6300 cases and nearly 200 deaths because of COVID-19.

Health officers in Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Mateo, and Sonoma counties made their respective announcements Friday, while Santa Clara County officials strongly urged its residents to wear face coverings.

Similar ordinances have also been issued by several Bay Area cities including Fremont, Pleasant Hill, and San Francisco for everyone to wear face coverings in public areas such as essential businesses and common areas.

In Alameda County and Contra Costa County, residents are required to wear face coverings in public from April 22 onwards. Even essential service employees like those running or working at grocery stores, gas stations and government employees are also required to keep their faces covered at all times. Effective Friday, April 17, face coverings are required for Sonoma County residents.

All the citizens must wear face coverings in any essential business while visiting a healthcare provider or facility, or while waiting in line for/riding public transportation, stated the order. The ordinance permitted the removal of masks if someone is driving in a car with family members or alone. Children under 12 years of age have also been exempted from wearing masks.

Face covering has also been made mandatory in Marin County and San Francisco from April 22 onwards while the ordinance was brought in effect on April 17.  Face coverings are required at essential businesses, in public facilities, on transit, and while performing essential work in San Francisco.

In Santa Clara County, however, face-covering has been recommended but nor required. In its health ordinance issued Friday, officials said they are “strongly urging” Santa Clara County residents to wear face coverings outside the house or when performing essential activities.  The ordinance for covering the face will also be effective from April 22 in San Mateo County.