As rules relax, everyone should act to avoid and limit spread. Maintain daily habits like keeping distance, wearing a face covering and avoiding crowds. Choose activities based on lower risk. Limit your overall risk on a daily and weekly basis.
The rules under the state’s “orange tier” go into effect on March 31 in Berkeley and the rest of the county:
- Restaurants can have indoor dining of up to 50 percent of capacity or 200 people total, whichever is less
- Retailers can open at full capacity
- Offices can open indoors, though telework is encouraged whenever possible
- Houses of worship, museums, and movie theaters can open at 50 percent capacity
- Gyms, fitness centers and pools can open indoors at 25 percent capacity
- Wineries, breweries and distilleries can open indoors at 25 percent capacity or 100 people, whichever is fewer
- Bars can open outdoors
Outdoor live events can have audiences up to 33 percent of capacity, or 25 percent of a suite starting April 1 - see details.
When cases rise, people’s actions have led to the increase. The same holds true when there’s a decrease: diligence by thousands has a collective impact. Wearing face coverings, avoiding gatherings, and keeping physical distance from other households lessens spread—and opens up more possibilities.
Each person that gets vaccinated also increases our overall protection. Among all Berkeleyans over the age of 16, City of Berkeley data show that roughly 27 percent are fully vaccinated—an increase from 12 percent three weeks ago.
“Even as more activities open up, we must not forget that the virus is still circulating in our community, new variants are emerging and cases are rising in other parts of the country,” said Dr. Lisa Hernandez, the City of Berkeley Health Officer. “To navigate our way through the pandemic, we need to use all the tools available—from face coverings to physical distance and hand hygiene. And when it’s your turn, get vaccinated as soon as possible.”
Budget risk, choose safer activities and maintain daily habits
As more activities open up, people should manage their risk. For each activity you choose, consider postponing another.
If this is the week you choose to go to the movies, you might postpone plans to go wine tasting. You might choose to alternate working out at a gym with at-home and outdoor fitness activities.
When leaving the safety of home, use three questions to help assess the risk of a particular activity: Where will you go? Who will attend? What will happen?
Those questions should guide you mostly to activities that are outside, shorter in duration and where people can safely stay six feet apart.
These questions should also help you avoid confined spaces, crowds and close contact with those outside of your household.
Everyone should always do the essentials: stay home when sick, wear face coverings, wash hands frequently, and keep physical distance from those not in your household.
“We are in a safer place thanks to the actions of so many, but the pandemic is not over,” said Dr. Hernandez. “Everyone doing their part will help continue to keep us all safe.”