FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) - Kentucky residents enjoying the warmer weather must avoid crowds due to the new coronavirus pandemic, including those who are golfing or exercising, Gov. Andy Beshear said Sunday.
“I know it’s beautiful outside. But folks, this is real,” Beshear said at his daily briefing. “We need your help in enforcing positive social peer pressure to make sure we’ve got folks doing the right thing.”
Beshear said the state had 45 more confirmed cases of the virus, pushing the state’s total to 439 infections as of Sunday. Nine people have died from the virus in Kentucky, including a death in Kenton County that Beshear said was disclosed after his Saturday evening briefing.
While golf courses are allowed to be open, Beshear threatened to shut down those where large groups repeatedly gather.
“We don’t want to have to do this,” he said. “It forces us to take action. I’m not doing this to be mean.”
Beshear also asked joggers to only go out with members of their family. Jogging in groups or with friends means “we take something that’s a good thing and we end up using it as a way to socialize and spread our contacts,” he said.
And Beshear said his administration is looking into numerous reports about crowded stores, including home improvement businesses.
“We’re going to have to ask those stores to find a way to enforce social distancing or we’re going to see how essential they are,” he said.
Most people who contract COVID-19 have mild or moderate symptoms, which can include fever and cough but also milder cases of pneumonia, sometimes requiring hospitalization. The risk of death is greater for older adults and people with other health problems. Hospitals in the most afflicted areas are straining to handle patients and some are short of critical supplies.
Follow AP coverage of the virus outbreak at https://apnews.com/VirusOutbreak and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak.
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