DeWine Lifts Ohio Curfew, Effective Immediately

DeWine says vaccinations in nursing homes are helping to lower Ohio's coronavirus numbers, but he warns that the curfew could return if things worsen.

click to enlarge Sundry and Vice, pre-pandemic - Photo: Hailey Bollinger
Photo: Hailey Bollinger
Sundry and Vice, pre-pandemic

Ohio Gov. DeWine and the Ohio Department of Health lifted the state’s curfew Thursday, citing downward-trending coronavirus stats.

“Thanks to a sustained decrease in #COVID19 hospitalizations, Ohio’s curfew has been lifted. If hospitalizations begin rising again, @OhioDeptofHealth may reinstate it. It's crucial that we all continue safety protocols to #SlowTheSpread and prevent hospitalizations from going up,” DeWine tweeted during his news conference on Feb. 11.

Ohio has been under a curfew for months due to the Ohio Department of Health’s recommendations and rising COVID numbers. To slow the spread of coronavirus throughout the state, non-essential activities were halted between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m. daily. On Jan. 28, DeWine pushed the curfew back to 11 p.m. and said that if Ohio’s numbers continued to improve, he and ODH would rescind it completely.

On Thursday, DeWine cited vaccinations at nursing homes as contributing to Ohio’s lower hospitalization and case counts, tweeting an image that shows 1,862 patients in Ohio hospitals as of Feb. 11. This is down from 2,705 on Jan. 29.

Hospitality business owners in Cincinnati and throughout Ohio have been calling for an end to the state’s evening curfew, but DeWine has said that the combination of indoor activities and maskless patrons enables more transmission vectors for the virus.

“We based this on the science,” DeWine said on Jan. 21. “When we hit the winter months, we’ve had more spread inside. No longer can your patrons be outside on a patio; they’re inside. It [the virus] spreads more inside. Your business is a business where unfortunately people cannot wear a mask at the same time they’re eating or they’re drinking.”

On Thursday, DeWine again cautioned that the curfew would return if cases, hospitalizations and deaths related to COVID-19 were to rise again.

Watch DeWine's news conference on the Ohio Channel. Learn more at coronavirus.ohio.gov.

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