COLUMBUS — Ohio Governor Mike DeWine has ordered the closure of Ohio’s fitness centers, gyms, bowling alleys, recreation centers, movie theaters, indoor water parks and indoor trampoline parks on Monday as the federal government encourages people to limit gatherings to less than 10 people.
As of 2 p.m. on Monday, Ohio had 50 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in 12 counties. The ages range from 14 to 86, with 14 people hospitalized in the state.
While closing the above mentioned businesses, Lt. Gov. Jon Husted emphasized the grocery stores will remain open during the pandemic.
“Grocery stores will remain open. You will have access to the essentials in life. That’s why we are doing what we’re doing — to limit the non-essentials so that we still have the essentials in life,” said Husted.
The announcement on Monday came after Sunday’s closure of dine-in restaurants and bars in the state.
All bars and restaurants in Ohio closed as of 9 p.m. Sunday until further notice, on the order of Gov. Mike DeWine, who is taking a tough stance on trying to stem the coronavirus saying “if we don’t take these actions now, it’ll be too late.”
Carryout and delivery remain an option during the closure.
DeWine said what he called “very drastic action” was prompted by concerns from around the state about crowded bars. He said takeout and delivery would still be allowed.
DeWine said he understood the impact on small businesses and steps would be taken to mitigate the suffering.
“What we’ve done this week is drastic action, but we’re taking these steps to save lives,” DeWine tweeted.
The governor said earlier in the day that it was possible that Ohio schools may be closed for the rest of the academic year.
The city of Columbus announced Sunday that a firefighter/emergency medical technician had tested positive for COVID-19. The firefighter has been isolated at home and 31 firefighters who had contact with the individual are being evaluated.
The Cleveland Metroparks Zoo and the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium joined the list of organizations announcing temporary closures.
The Daily Sentinel Managing Editor Sarah Hawley and the Associated Press contributed to this report.