CHARLOTTE, N.C. — It was a sunny, warm weekend across the Carolinas and health officials are concerned that people are not taking the advice of health officials seriously to practice social distancing.
Mecklenburg officials are warning people to please stay at home.
"Based on what we saw yesterday with the parks, with the lakes, the sandbars. There are still a lot of people who aren't taking this seriously,” said Mecklenburg County Health Director Gibbie Harris. “We need everyone, everyone, to be part of the solution."
Harris said there are extra levels of restrictions that can be applied if that becomes necessary. "It's possible that we would need to look at enforcement in a different way than we are at this point and time."
Harris issued a plea Sunday afternoon for social distancing, as the county reached a dreaded milestone; the first death due to coronavirus.
The patient was 60-years-old, who had significant underlying medical conditions, and likely got the virus through community spread.
"COVID-19 is in our community. We do have community spread, and you need to assume that you're going to be exposed if you're out and about," Harris said.
Health officials say approximately one of every five new cases are requiring hospitalization and a high number of positive tests are still coming from the younger population.
While health officials say exercising and getting fresh air is important, it's equally important to stay at least six feet away from anyone outside your immediate family.
At 5 p.m. Monday the statewide stay at home order takes effect and will last for 30 days. It's similar to Mecklenburg County’s order that is already in place, which requires requires residents to stay home unless they are doing essential shopping or work at an essential operation.
"The curve will not flatten immediately," Harris explained. "We don't expect to see our numbers to drop right away just because we put a stay at home order in place."
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