LOS ANGELES – Los Angeles County officials Saturday reported the largest one-day total of coronavirus cases since the pandemic began, confirming another 2,112 cases of COVID-19 and 48 additional deaths, bringing the county’s totals to 53,651 cases and 2,338 fatalities.
To date (May 30), Public Health has identified 733 coronavirus cases and 16 deaths in Palmdale; 587 cases and 12 deaths in Lancaster; 46 cases and nine deaths in Quartz Hill; 29 cases and two deaths in Lake Los Angeles; 36 cases and no deaths in the Littlerock/Pearblossom, Juniper Hills areas; and 17 cases and no deaths in Sun Village. View the latest detailed report here.
Officials said the large one-day total was due in part to a backlog of test results being processed and also a new lab beginning to report results.
“Each day, we join with families and friends mourning the devastating loss of life to COVID-19 and we keep those who are grieving in our thoughts and prayers,” said Barbara Ferrer, county public health director. “LA County is on our recovery journey, and as more businesses and spaces re-open, it has never been more important — as individuals, businesses and institutions — to use the tools that we all have to take care of each other and to continue to slow the spread of COVID-19. This means practicing physical distancing, wearing cloth face coverings when in public, and adhering to all directives in the Health Officer order.”
The numbers came as restaurants throughout the county have been cleared to reopen for limited dine-in service, as were barbershops and hair salons.
Los Angeles County — home to roughly half of the state’s coronavirus cases and deaths — had been one of only about a dozen California counties not to have received a “variance” from the state allowing more types of businesses to reopen. The variances are granted based on a list of criteria, including infection rates, hospital capacity, testing availability and ability to trace contacts of infected residents.
The county submitted a request for a variance earlier this week, and it was granted Friday morning.
“This further brings our communities together and resumes a sense of normalcy, representing monumental progress for Los Angeles County on the path toward recovery,” Board of Supervisors Chairwoman Kathryn Barger said.
County health officials released reopening protocols Friday afternoon, and businesses will be free to open as soon as they can meet them.
For restaurants, the guidelines include a restriction to 60% of capacity. Customers and employees will be screened for symptoms such as cough or fever, physical distancing measures will be enforced and customers will be required to wear face coverings when not eating. Customers are encouraged to make reservations, and they will be asked to wait for their table either in their cars or outside the restaurant. Bar areas of restaurants will remain closed.
Hair salons will also be required to enforce physical distancing, and employees and customers will also be screened for health symptoms. Customers and employees will be required to wear face coverings.
Ferrer again stressed the need for businesses to adhere to all requirements before reopening.
“The only reason we were able to successfully submit a variance was because of all the work everyone has done throughout our county,” Ferrer said. “We do ask businesses to please adhere to the directives that are included in the health officer order and to the protocols prior to reopening. Compliance with the protocols is required. Reopening as safely as possible and in ways that protect both employees and customers will require a lot of effort, and we do appreciate everyone’s commitment to doing this right.”
Barger said that on Tuesday, members of the county’s Economic Resiliency Task Force will give a presentation on “roadmaps to safely reopen some key sectors, including restaurants, sports venues, theme parks, corporate businesses and manufacturing and film and digital media.”
She said the roadmaps will “ensure industries can hit the ground running with proper public health guidelines … as soon as the state gives approval to reopen. The plans provide guidance for immediate reopening and a framework for the return to the new normal.”
An interactive dashboard is available that provides comprehensive information on COVID-19 cases, along with maps and graphs showing data by city and community. To view Public Health’s COVID-19 Surveillance Dashboard, visit: http://dashboard.publichealth.lacounty.gov/covid19_surveillance_dashboard/