Positive Cases: Carroll 8, Weakley 5, Henry, 6; Tennessee 4,138, State Deaths 72, Recovered 466; US Cases 386,817, Deaths 12,285; Recovered 20,191
DRESDEN (April 7) — On Thursday, April 2, Governor Bill Lee signed executive order 23 requiring Tennesseans to stay at home unless engaged in essential activities or services. The order amended the previous executive order by making it a requirement, not a request.
Essential activities include but are not limited to activities for health and safety, necessary supplies and services, outdoor activity, certain types of essential work, and to take care of others.
Americans have been asked for almost a month now to stay at home to “slow the spread” of COVID-19. It’s understandable that people are getting cabin fever and want life to return to normal. Unfortunately, to get back to “normal” officials are asking the public to limit their contact with others and stay home unless absolutely necessary, i.e. engaging in an essential activity.
Visiting public places raises your risk of illness. COVID-19 is at least 10 times more lethal than influenza. It is easily spread via surfaces and the air. People can be infected for up to 14 days without showing symptoms.
Since last Tuesday in Tennessee an additional 1,899 people have tested positive, 49 have died, and 233 more are now hospitalized due to COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel “new” coronavirus. To date, 466 people in Tennessee have recovered from COVID-19.
Carroll County had two cases two weeks ago; today there are eight. Two weeks ago Henry County did not have a confirmed case of COVID-19. Today there are six cases. Weakley County had no cases two weeks ago, but has five cases as of today. The numbers are expected to increase.
The governor and state officials anticipate a surge in COVID-19 cases in April.
Projections for Tennessee from Healthdata.org indicate a surge in cases and deaths from COVID-19 peaking around April 15 with an average of 25 deaths per day.
“The month of April stands to be an extremely tough time for our state as we face the potential for a surge in COVID-19 cases,” said Lee. “Every Tennessean must take this seriously, remain at home and ensure we save lives.”
On April 2, FEMA approved Tennessee’s COVID-19 major disaster declaration. This accelerates efforts to work with the US Army Corps of Engineers and expand statewide capacity by an additional 7,000 beds.
The City of Martin announced March 29 all Martin city parks will be closed until further notice. The Brian Brown Memorial Greenway will also be closed until April 14.
On March 30 Dresden implemented a curfew (9 p.m. to 6 a.m.) and closed city parks until further notice. The walking trail remains open, but guests are required to maintain a 6 foot distance from others.
Greenfield Mayor Cindy McAdams announced on March 31, the parks (including baseball fields, tennis courts, playground equipment and basketball courts) will be closed until further notice. The mayor also asked citizens to follow the guidelines set by the Governor and President so Greenfield does not have to implement a curfew.
Tennessee state parks closed April 4, and will remain closed until April 14 during the safer at home mandate.
Here are a few questions you may have regarding what is allowed during the “Safer At Home” order.
Can I go to the store? Yes.
To get essentials like food and supplies then return home. Send one person to the store to get everything on the list in one trip. Have someone you trust watch children or dependents. Try to limit the number of trips made in a week. Don’t buy more than you will need.
Can I go to the doctor or pharmacy? Yes.
See if your doctor or pharmacy will provide a 90-day prescription of essential medicines to help limit your exposure to the public.
Can I go to the gas station? Yes.
Use hand sanitizer after touching the gas pump.
Can I take food, medicine or supplies to my elderly family or friends? Yes.
Older adults are more likely to die from COVID-19. Consider designating a drop spot for goods and supplies to limit contact.
Can I order food from a restaurant? Yes.
At this time restaurants in Tennessee can only provide curbside, carryout and delivery because gatherings of 10 or more people are discouraged.
Can I go outside? Yes.
Walking, biking, gardening, or playing while avoiding others (people you don’t live with) is fine.
Can I play a sport, swim or hunt/fish? Yes and no.
It is ok as long as the activity can be performed safely away from others to prevent spreading COVID-19.
Can I have a yard sale? Probably not.
Gatherings of 10 or more people are discouraged at this time to prevent spreading COVID-19.
Can I host an event or attend a family reunion? No.
Please avoid gathering with others right now as it may infect you or someone you love.
Can I attend in-person church services? No, but possibly yes.
Some churches have held parking lot services. Visitors are required to stay in their cars. Some churches have held online services, using websites or social media to spread the Word of God. Find out what your church is doing.
What about weddings or funerals? No.
It is strongly encouraged that weddings and funerals be postponed or attended only by close family members.
Can I travel? Yes and no.
Travel to care for elderly or minors and travel required by law or work is considered essential. Visiting public places to “hang out” or socialize is discouraged at this time.
Can I go to the park? No.
Unfortunately, most parks are closed right now.
What is an essential business?
The list of essential businesses identifies workers who conduct a range of operations and services that are typically essential to continued critical infrastructure viability, including staffing operations centers, maintaining and repairing critical infrastructure, operating call centers, working construction, and performing operational functions, among others. It also includes workers who support crucial supply chains and enable functions for critical infrastructure. The industries they support represent, but are not limited to, medical and healthcare, telecommunications, information technology systems, defense, food and agriculture, transportation and logistics, energy, water and wastewater, law enforcement, and public works.