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Tooele County to begin moving from “Urgent” to “Stabilization” phase

The Tooele County Health Department says that on May 1st, 2020, the county will begin loosening restrictions on businesses put into place at the beginning of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic. (Screen shot:

SALT LAKE CITY — As soon as the current Tooele County Health Order expires, a new one will take its place. The new order will allow businesses in Tooele County to shift from the High-Risk phase to the Stabilization Phase regarding how businesses can and should operate in the midst of a continuing COVID-19 pandemic.

Tooele’s plan to reopen is based on guidelines presented by the state of Utah in its “Utah Leads Together v2.0,” a plan introduced on April 17 that recommends actions Utah businesses and residents can take during the so-called Urgent, Stabilization, and Recovery phases of Utah’s response to the pandemic.

In a statement and live announcement presented on Facebook, Tooele County health officials cited the county’s “recent drop in transmission rates and a lowered perceived risk of infection from COVID-19,” as reasons for implementing the Stabilization phase.

Tooele businesses will only be allowed to reopen if they have protocols in place to minimize the risk of exposure to COVID-19, and this applies to both the public and the employees of the business.

The protocols vary by industry type, but most share best-practices like:

  • Maintaining six feet of distance between individuals
  • Wearing masks in public
  • Increased cleaning practices
  • Protective hygiene, and
  • Monitoring for symptoms

The Tooele County Health Department breaks down 11 industry-specific guidelines. They include best practices for daycare, food service, gyms, retail and swimming pools among others. Here’s the complete list.

A Tooele County man was the first known person from Utah to have tested positive for COVID-19 coronavirus, but he was not in Utah at the time. John Haering and his wife Melanie were aboard a cruise ship with another Utah couple when John developed fever and flu-like symptoms.

At the time of publication, the Tooele County Health Department had reported 56 cases of COVID-19, with five hospitalizations and zero deaths.

In their statement released to media outlets, Tooele County officials said they will continue to monitor data as it comes to them and will move to the next phase when it is prudent to do so.

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