Gov. McMaster issues statewide ‘home or work’ order to combat COVID-19 spread

South Carolina News

COLUMBIA, S.C. (WCBD) – Governor Henry McMaster on Monday issued a statewide ‘home or work’ order which goes into effect Tuesday afternoon.

“Under this order, everyone should stay home unless they are working, visiting family, recreating outdoor or obtaining necessary good and services,” he said during a briefing in Columbia Monday afternoon.

No additional businesses will close. Gov. McMaster on Friday expanded his list of non-essential businesses that must close, and that order went into effect Monday at 5:00 p.m.

The state is also requiring mandates for retail stories that do remain open. Moving forward, these stores must limit the number of customers and practice social distancing requirements in stores, meaning no more than five per 1,000 square feet or 20 percent of capacity, whichever is lower.

Those who do not comply with Gov. McMaster’s new orders will face criminal penalties including a misdemeanor charge and 30 days in jail or $100 fine for each day of violation.

“Why are we doing this now? Why not wait until later, why not earlier? That is because it is time,” said Gov. McMaster. “According to the data, according to the science, according to the facts, and according to the expert advice and guidance – as we have explained before, it is now time to make these recommended actions required.”

Gov. McMaster said too many people are on the roads and waterways. “Too many people are in the stores, too many people are not complying with our requests concerning social distancing,” he said. “We’ve asked, we’ve urged, we’ve requested but the last week or so have shown that it’s not enough.”

McMaster said the rate of infection is on the rise and the rate on non-compliance is on the rise.

“We hope this order will reduce the rising rate of infection.”

For churches on Easter, Gov. McMaster urged them to stream on the internet or meet outdoors.

The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control is reporting 183 new coronavirus cases in the state bringing the total to 2,232.

State health officials say 21,384 COVID-19 tests have been conducted as of Monday.

Officials estimate 3,500 patients could need hospitalization by early May and said the South Carolina National Guard will be implementing a tiered response program.

They are looking to add 3,000 beds to the beds currently in hospitals around the state over the next month and will open shuttered facilities, arenas and tents.

Hospital officials said they think that will be enough beds to handle an expected surge in COVID-19 cases.

Total cases by county:

  • Abbeville County: 6
  • Aiken County: 27
  • Allendale County: 2
  • Anderson County: 72
  • Bamberg County: 5
  • Barnwell County: 3
  • Beaufort County: 163
  • Berkeley County: 52
  • Calhoun County: 5
  • Charleston County: 300
  • Cherokee County: 4
  • Chester County: 14
  • Chesterfield County: 15
  • Clarendon County: 58
  • Colleton County: 10
  • Darlington County: 27
  • Dillon County: 1
  • Dorchester County: 52
  • Edgefield County: 6
  • Fairfield County: 16
  • Florence County: 39
  • Georgetown County: 21
  • Greenville County: 204
  • Greenwood County: 11
  • Hampton County: 3
  • Horry County: 76
  • Jasper County: 11
  • Kershaw County: 152
  • Lancaster County: 43
  • Laurens County: 6
  • Lee County: 18
  • Lexington County: 124
  • Marion County: 4
  • Marlboro County: 6
  • McCormick County: 2
  • Newberry County: 7
  • Oconee County: 8
  • Orangeburg County: 28
  • Pickens County: 20
  • Richland County: 311
  • Saluda County: 4
  • Spartanburg County: 88
  • Sumter County: 90
  • Union County: 12
  • Williamsburg County: 11
  • York County: 95

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