Shelby County Health Dept. loosens COVID-19 restrictions for sporting events and restaurants

History of COVID-19: The new coronavirus

SHELBY COUNTY, Tenn. (WMC) - The Shelby County Health Department anticipated loosening COVID-19 restrictions across the county last week due to a consistent downward trend in cases.

During Tuesday’s task force briefing, the health department announced the latest health directive detailing those loosened restrictions.

Loosened restrictions include:

  • Restaurants and limited-service restaurants can remain open until midnight instead of closing at 10 p.m.
  • Restaurant seating has been increased to allow no more than eight people per table
  • Sporting event seating can reduce social distancing to 6 feet allowing venues to hold more people

Shelby County Health Department Director Alisa Haushalter says these are minor changes but they have been much anticipated. The directive is set to take effect at midnight.

“We’re not going to be back to normal for some time,” said Haushalter. “There will always be restrictions in place until, one, we have a vaccine and we have significant numbers of people who are vaccinated.”

Haushalter says if a business is closed, it could take up to two weeks to create a plan for them to reopen according to the health department’s standards.

SCHD will also respond to complaints regarding masking and social distancing compliance.

Reports for restaurant or business out of compliance, call 222-MASK.

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