LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Officials in Clark County, Indiana, are implementing restrictions on restaurants, bars and social gatherings as the coronavirus continues to surge.

According to a news release from the Clark County Health Department, the following restrictions are effective Friday, Nov. 20:

  • Restaurants must not exceed 75% capacity.
  • Bars and barrooms must close at 10 p.m. Bar-top seating is prohibited at all times of day.
  • Indoor social gatherings and events must not exceed 50% capacity.

Clark County is on the verge of the red zone, which denotes the most severe community spread of COVID-19: more than 200 weekly cases per 100,000 residents and a positivity rate of 15% or greater. According to the Indiana State Department of Health, the county most recently reported 492 weekly cases per 100,000 residents and a seven-day positivity rate of 11.87%. 

On Nov. 11, Gov. Eric Holcomb announced targeted restrictions for red-zone counties meant to curb the spread of COVID-19 and provide relief for hospitals as they admit more and more patients who have contracted the coronavirus. Among the restrictions: limiting public gatherings to 25 people. 

Clark County Health Officer Dr. Eric Yazel said the measures going into place Friday "will provide the County’s best defense against more restrictive orders outlined by the Governor." 

"In addition, the Clark County Health Department believes these measures will help decrease community spread," Yazel said in a news release. 

On Sunday, Nov. 15, Yazel told WDRB News he hopes to see some signs of progress before Thanksgiving.

"It's just a bad, bad recipe for COVID spread, and so the more we can get that positivity rate down in our community in advance of the holiday, the better the chances we'll have of weathering it, and keeping everybody safe," he said. 

The restrictions are set to expire on Dec. 4. To read the order in full, click here

Similar restrictions were announced for restaurants and bars in Floyd County, Indiana, on Tuesday. 

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