COLUMBUS, Ohio (WANE) Ohio’s Department of Health Director Stephanie McCloud signed an order Tuesday pushing back the statewide curfew by one hour. The curfew now goes into effect at 11 p.m. and lasts until 5 a.m.
The new hours began Thursday January 28, 2021 at 12:01 a.m. and last through February 11, 2021. The change is being made because Ohio hospitalizations for COVID-19 have remained below 3500 for seven consecutive days.
Under the new policy for phasing out the curfew:
- After seven straight days of hospitalizations below 3,500, the curfew will begin at 11 p.m. and run at least two weeks
- After seven straight days of hospitalizations below 3,000, the curfew will begin at midnight and run at least two weeks
- After seven straight days of hospitalizations below 2,500, the curfew will end.
The curfew has been unpopular with bars and restaurants, whose industry has suffered from closing early in addition to having fewer customers because of the coronavirus pandemic. But Governor DeWine said a main reason for instituting a curfew was to keep the hospital system from becoming overwhelmed with COVID-19 patients.
In recent days, those hospitalization numbers have started to come down. When DeWine announced the new policy Tuesday, hospitalizations had been declining every day since Jan. 18.