Indoor malls, entertainment centers ordered to close; 89 new COVID-19 cases confirmed in NJ

Gov. Phil Murphy has ordered all indoor malls, amusement parks and entertainment centers to close at 8 p.m. Tuesday, as state health officials announced 89 new cases of coronavirus COVID-19.

News 12 Staff

Mar 17, 2020, 6:34 PM

Updated 1,528 days ago

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Gov. Phil Murphy has ordered all indoor malls, amusement parks and entertainment centers to close at 8 p.m. Tuesday, as state health officials announced 89 new cases of coronavirus COVID-19.
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These restrictions are on top of ones announced Monday, closing movie theaters and gyms and mandating bars and restaurants be takeout only.
“I think yesterday that we took more action as a state than since the Revolutionary War. So, we are in unchartered territory,” Murphy said.
The governor said that Tuesday was “Day 1” of the new way of life in the Garden State.
Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli said that the new positive tests show that the virus has not spread across most of the state. She says that there is a concentration in the northeastern corner of New Jersey.
“Some have no known exposure. That is an indication that community spread is occurring,” she said.
Persichilli also said that the state is looking at reopening eight currently closed critical care hospitals to provide bed-space for an expected surge of patients. The governor said that he is requesting help from the Army Corps of Engineers in building those facilities - help promised by President Donald Trump.

State officials say that the virus is moving very quickly and that many patients are put on ventilators within 24 hours of being hospitalized. Persichilli says that of the 267 cases in New Jersey, about 55% of them are in the hospital or where hospitalized for a time.
Murphy and Persichilli continued to emphasize social distancing and admit businesses could be closed and overnight travel discouraged for some time - all to protect people from being exposed to the virus.
But the governor said that he is not yet considering a statewide shelter in place order.
Photos: The Impact of Coronavirus Around the World
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