NORTH SHORE, Pa. (KDKA) — Bars and restaurants shared what precautions they are taking amid a coronavirus spike in Allegheny County.
Cases are on the rise in Allegheny County, which reported 61 new confirmed infections on Friday, its second-highest total.
On Friday, there were people socializing on the North Shore and in Oakmont, but the crowds were nothing like they used to be.
After spending so long in the “red” and “yellow” phases, the overwhelming majority of people say they’re more concerned about making sure the region doesn’t go back there again.
“It’s just kind of eerie seeing everyone so far apart and so few people on the streets right now. But it’s good to be out,” Laurel Bukowski said.
Patios and eat-in dining were busy Friday but still not the same. Precautions to stop the spread of COVID-19 were evident.
“We have gallons of disinfectant, gallons of hand sanitizer,” said JT Waters, manager of Hoffstot’s Cafe Monaco.
Governor Tom Wolf reminded Pennsylvania residents and businesses that masks are mandatory when visiting a business.
At Hoffstot’s Cafe Monaco in Oakmont, some patrons wore masks while dining outside.
“My fear is by not practicing good habits, we may return to yellow or even red more quickly than we return to normal,” said Stan Geyer.
The Allegheny County Health Department says over the past week, there were 244 new cases reported “overwhelmingly” among younger people out and about traveling, vising bars and going to restaurants.
However, the county health department says they didn’t identify any clusters among travel destinations or activities, and they can’t know exactly when someone contracted the virus.
Tequila Cowboy on the North Shore waited until Thursday to reopen, out of an abundance of caution.
“The goal is to keep things on an upswing as much as possible,’ said Christian Miranda, assistant general manager. “We don’t want to go backwards as far as a business trend but also as a health trend.”
The Allegheny Health Department is working with the Food Safety Program, which has contacted restaurants where employees have tested positive and where there have been complaints about people not wearing masks.