162 LA County Businesses Violated Health Orders Over The Weekend, Officials Say

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – Calling this past weekend “the first in our journey of recovery,” Los Angeles County residents were mostly commended by officials for following social distancing guidelines for the first weekend in which trails, golf courses and some businesses were allowed to reopen since the coronavirus pandemic began. However, dozens of businesses, specifically flower shops, were found to be in violation of health orders.

People mingle close to one another as businesses in the flower district in Skid Row reopen in time for Mother’s Day on May 8, 2020 in Los Angeles. (Getty Images)

Of the 410 businesses surveyed by county inspectors over the weekend, 162 were found to be violating health orders, L.A. County Public Health Director Dr. Barbara Ferrer reported Monday.

“We did see many (flower shop) vendors that allowed customers into stores, not following the physical distancing measures, and not requiring the customers to wear cloth face coverings,” L.A. County Public Health Director Dr. Barbara Ferrer reported.

Some flower shops were shut down by county inspectors, although the exact number were not disclosed.

“Its extraordinarily important to follow the health officer orders and the directives,” Ferrer said. “Businesses should not open until they can adhere to all the protocols.”

The situation was different at trails and golf courses.

“Larger but manageable crowds” were reported at trails, Ferrer said, while golf courses saw “fairly low traffic” due to Mother’s day, but users were “compliant.”

“I am so proud of our communities for being cautious and abiding by the guidelines,” L.A. County Supervisor Kathryn Barger said Monday. “Overall, we had no issues with crowding, everyone kept a safe distance and wore masks when it was appropriate. That is exactly the type of response we had hoped for.”

Meanwhile, there were 591 new coronavirus cases in L.A. County and 39 deaths Monday, bringing the total number of cases to 32,258, and the death toll to 1,569. The low number of new cases is due to a lack of reporting from commercial laboratories, many of which were closed over the weekend.

Officials confirmed Monday that more than 3,600 healthcare workers and first responders in Los Angeles County have contracted COVID-19, as the number continues to rise at an alarming rate.

L.A. County Public Health Director Dr. Barbara Ferrer reported that 3,614 healthcare workers in the county have now been diagnosed with coronavirus, a jump of 636 new cases since last week.

The spike is due in part to increased testing at nursing homes. 42 percent of the cases are among nursing home staff, while 29 percent are in hospitals.

Nurses make up 46 percent of all cases.

20 healthcare workers have died of coronavirus, included five in the past week. 14 of those worked in either nursing homes or assisted living facilities, three worked in hospitals and one in a correctional facility.

779 residents of L.A. County institutional settings have died of coronavirus, which accounts for 50 percent of all deaths from the disease. The vast majority of those lived in nursing homes.

Institutional settings include nursing homes, assisted living facilities, jails, prisons, homeless shelters, treatment centers and supportive living facilities.

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