In response to updated guidelines from the CDC to avoid discretionary travel and follow the The President Trump’s coronavirus guidelines for America, the Dare County Control Group has made the decision to restrict visitor access to Dare County beginning today, Tuesday, March 17 at 2 p.m.
The decision impacts all beach towns in Dare County, including Duck, Southern Shores, Kitty Hawk, Kill Devil Hills, Nags Head, Manteo and Hatteras Island.
“While there are currently no individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19 in Dare County, officials weighed the potential benefits for community health along with the tremendous impacts these restrictions have on our community. These restrictions may be inconvenient, disappointing and have financial impacts, however, they were made in the interest of public safety to limit the spread of COVID-19,” the control group said in a statement.
Beginning at 2 p.m., checkpoints will be established at entry points to Dare County and no visitors will be allowed access. Permanent residents, non-resident property owners and non-resident employees of Dare County businesses may review entry guidelines at www.darenc.com/entry. Reentry permits from previous years will not be accepted. Staff is working to activate the online permitting system by 1 p.m.
To avoid contact with personnel, please display your permit on your dashboard so it is clearly visible for checkpoint personnel.
Visitors will not be allowed to travel through Dare County to access Currituck County (Corolla), Hyde County (Ocracoke Island), or Tyrrell County. People who reside, own property or work in Corolla or Ocracoke will be allowed entry.
Personnel working at the Emergency Operations Center are available to answer COVID-19 related questions using a dedicated phone line. Please call 252.475.5008. Personnel anticipates a high volume of calls. If you reach a voicemail, please leave a message and your call will be returned as soon as possible.
General COVID-19 Information
There are currently 39 individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19 in North Carolina. Currently, no individuals in Dare County have tested positive for COVID-19.
The President’s Coronavirus Guidelines for America, 15 Days to Slow the Spread
Yesterday the federal government announced guidelines and a plan to slow the spread of COVID-19. Dare County will adhere to the guidance from CDC and North Carolina Department of Health & Human Services (NCDHHS). All Dare County community members should adhere to the guidelines that were issued and available at www.coronavirus.gov.
Outer Banks Hospital
The Outer Banks Hospital has implemented new visitor restrictions. Only one immediate family member over the age of 16 and not exhibiting any symptoms of illness may visit a patient at The Outer Banks Hospital and/or Medical Group clinic.
Starting today, Tuesday, March 17, The Outer Banks Hospital will begin screening patients and visitors for symptoms of illness as they enter the Medical Office Building and Main Lobby. Patients and visitors with illness will be masked and asked to sanitize their hands prior to going to their appointment.
Town and Agency Specific Information & Cancellations
Cancellations, closings and the most current information from the towns and the National Park Service is available at www.darenc.com/covid19.
This story originally appeared on OBXToday.com. Read More local stories here.