ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — More coronavirus-related restrictions will be lifted this Friday, May 29 in Maryland, but Gov. Larry Hogan warned that if people act “recklessly” it could prevent the state from opening faster and even lead to a spike in COVID-19 numbers.
“We must all continue to remain vigilant, particularly as we begin to come into contact with more people, a lower risk, does not mean no risk and safer, does not mean completely safe,” said Hogan. “Just because you can do something, does not mean that you should, particularly if you are a person in a vulnerable category, or if you are around someone who is, If you can stay home, you should continue to do so as much as you can.”
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The governor said his Coronavirus Recovery Team is monitoring data closely and after a 24-day plateauing trend, he’s hoping to see more encouraging numbers that would allow him to bring the state into Phase 2 of his recovery plan as early as next week.
“We would then be in a position to begin entering stage two of our recovery, which would mean a lifting of the order and allowing other non-essential businesses to begin reopening,” Hogan said. “We are moving to safely reopen our economy and put more people back to work. We want to continue to strongly stress the need to follow CDC guidelines. The fight against this virus is by no means over.”
Hogan urged Marylanders to continue to avoid crowds and to work from home if they can.
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“It remains critical that Marylanders continue practicing physical distancing staying six feet apart, wearing masks and indoor public areas including retail stores, and that they avoid using public transportation, unless it is absolutely necessary,” the governor added.
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He stressed personal responsibility, saying Maryland should take responsibility for themselves as well as their families, co-workers and fellow Marylanders.
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“COVID-19 is still very much a deadly threat, and are responsible behavior is absolutely critical,” Hogan said.
But he said he was shocked to see the photos and videos from Ocean City, Maryland over the holiday weekend.
“I was a little bit shocked to see some of the some of the photographs or the video of people on the boardwalk in Ocean City with some of those crowds, which didn’t appear to be too safe to me,” he said.
“Unfortunately there are still some people who are clearly not taking this pandemic seriously, who are acting recklessly, and whose actions are needlessly putting themselves and others at risk,” he added. “And if too many people engage in this type of behavior, it could threaten to cause another spike, which could cause even further destruction to our economy.”
Hogan thanked the majority of citizens, who he said clearly understand social distancing and wearing masks help prevent the spread of coronavirus.