Charleston, S.C. – WCBD – Four downtown restaurants closed this week due to employees testing positive for COVID-19. Fleet Landing, Cru Café, Purlieu, and Melfi’s.
Restaurants and businesses are not required to close if an employee tests positive for COVID-19. It is recommended that everything is sanitized and that employee or those who came in contact should quarantine, but for these restaurants the decision to close completely was voluntary.
Weesie Newton Co-Owner of Fleet Landing said they were notified on Monday that an employee tested positive for COVID-19. She said while closing the restaurant was the right thing to do it was a hard decision.
“So out of an abundance of caution, we decided let’s just close a couple of days and take that time to communicate with our staff, communicate with the employee who was sick, and communicate with DHEC.”
DHEC ruled no other staff member or guest was considered close contact with that employee since everyone had their temperature taken and face masks were worn.
“We are at reduced capacity so we are very safely distancing tables and that kind of thing, we have a sanitation person on site, and we’ve gone to QR code for our menus so that’s contactless,” said Newton.
Governor Henry McMaster stated this week he does not intend on closing businesses again.
“We can not keep businesses closed forever. We can’t isolate South Carolina from the rest of the world. What it boils down to is we must be careful individually,” said McMaster.
Dr. Linda Bell with the Department of Health and Environmental Control said she is now the most concerned with the increase of COVID-19 cases since the pandemic began.
“Your community might not be a hot spot today but there should be no mistake that COVID-19 transmission is still high and widespread in South Carolina at this time,” Bell said.
The Department of Health and Environmental Control still encourages wearing a mask, social distancing, and limiting group sizes.