Statewide mask mandate goes into effect at 6 p.m. Thursday; here’s how it will work…

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COLUMBUS, Ohio (WJW) — A statewide mask mandate goes into effect at 6 p.m. Thursday for Ohioans, just three weeks after face coverings became mandatory for several counties under the Ohio Public Health Advisory Alert System.

Gov. Mike DeWine announced the mandate Wednesday. He’ll speak again at a press briefing set for Thursday afternoon.

The mask order applies to those 10 years or older.

Masks must be worn:

  • At an indoor location that’s not a residence
  • Outdoors, when unable to keep 6 feet of social distance from those not in your household
  • When waiting for, riding, driving, or operating public transportation, including taxi, car service, private ride share

Exceptions:

  • Those with a medical condition or a disability or those communicating with someone with a disability
  • Those who are actively exercising or playing sports
  • Those who are officiants at religious services
  • Those who are actively involved in public safety
  • Those who are actively eating or drinking

Earlier this month, the state launched the Public Health Advisory Alert System, a color-coded system for coronavirus rusk in the state’s 88 counties. Masks have since been mandated for counties classified as Level 3 .

Ohio on Wednesday also issued a travel advisory for states with higher coronavirus rates.

People coming into Ohio from states reporting positive testing rates of 15 percent or higher are asked to self-quarantine for 14 days. This applies to Ohio residents and people traveling here from other states, whether they traveled for business or vacation.

The current list of states under the travel advisory includes Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Nevada, South Carolina and Texas, as well as Puerto Rico. The list will be based on a seven-day rolling average and updated once a week.

The Ohio Department of Health said Wednesday there were 1,527 COVID-19 cases, 16 deaths, 128 hospitalizations and 19 intensive care admissions reported in the last 24 hours. That’s the second-highest daily number of cases, according to the governor.

There have been 78,742 total confirmed and probable cases of the virus, resulting in 3,235 deaths, in Ohio since the pandemic began.

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