Del. health officials reminding people to follow safety guidelines over holiday weekend


DELAWARE – Many beach towns now requiring people to wear masks on the boardwalk and even on the beach. “As we’re seeing more and more people come into town and visit the downtown businesses we’re seeing kind of a mix. You have about half of the people wear masks. Half of them don’t,” said Lewes city manager Ann Marie Townshend.

Delaware Division of Public Health director Dr. Karyl Rattay says celebrating responsibly is just a small step to take towards safety. “We hope that people really take that to heart and follow the simple behavior of wearing a face covering and distancing yourself from others,” said Dr. Rattay.

It’s not new advice – but local leaders say it’s important to follow as the 4th of July holiday weekend kicks off. “I think really what this does is add clarity that we know it’s a tight area. We know there’s a lot of people in this area, and just for everybody’s safety – wear your mask when you’re there please,” said Townshend.

Townshend tells 47ABC that hospitality ambassadors will be on hand throughout the weekend. She says they’ll be educating people about safety – even providing disposable masks to people who may need them. “A lot of people are coming from other states so they may not realize there’s a mask requirement here in Lewes. So once they know they’ve been pretty receptive to the message,” said Townshend.

Townshend says that police in Lewes will be focusing on preventing people from setting off illegal fireworks. She also says that there will be a strong police presence in the downtown area. “The police will be there to enforce if there are issues, but I think we’re going to see for the most part is people saying okay,” said Townshend.

Dr. Rattay says that as always – out of state visitors are welcome to come celebrate in the state’s beach towns. But health officials are asking those visitors to respect the state’s rules – and residents. “If you don’t want to wear a face covering then we recommend that you don’t come to Delaware and you don’t come to our beaches this year,” said Dr. Rattay.

Dr. Rattay says that the Delaware Division of Public Health will be monitoring for any spikes in cases following this holiday weekend. She also says if you’re feeling sick or are especially vulnerable to the virus – you should consider staying home.

Categories: Coronavirus, Delaware, Health, Local News