A recent surge in COVID-19 cases in Los Angeles County has led to more restrictions for citizens and local businesses, especially restaurants.
The United States leads the world in total cases and deaths, and the rate of new cases is on the rise, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Los Angeles has also seen a spike in cases, causing the County to announce Dec. 2 that gatherings of people outside of immediate households are prohibited with the exception of religious services and protests.
Studio City resident Gemma Lippman ’22 said she has not noticed an influx in COVID-19 cases in Studio City but has seen people who have not obeyed the stay at home order.
“From what I’ve seen, COVID-19 in Studio City hasn’t been too bad since its mostly residential, but it’s definitely getting worse in other places,” Lippman said. “Although I saw there was a stay at home order, it doesn’t feel like people have been following it.”
Cases continue to rise
5,025 new cases were reported in Los Angeles County on Dec. 3, adding to the total case count of 415,805 and potentially raising the death toll above the 7,782 deaths already reported. Overall, cases are up 8.6% from last week, and deaths are up 2.3%, The Weather Channel reported.
According to ABC7 News, cases are projected to double in the next two weeks, and as a result, officials have urged residents not to hold large gatherings on holidays and to temporarily cease traveling. These requests may continue through Christmas, the New Year and potentially beyond, depending on case rates.
In response to the rapid growth rate of new cases, Los Angeles County announced a curfew Nov. 21, banning people from leaving their homes from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. In addition, the county shut down in-person dining for three weeks Nov. 25. Restaurants will still be allowed to provide takeout, drive-thru and delivery.
COVID-19 impacts local businesses and students
Sharky’s Woodfired Mexican Grill in Studio City is a common lunch spot among students. However, due to the ban on in-person dining, the restaurant has moved some of their chairs and tables to the back of the building. They will still continue to provide food by takeout and delivery services.
Studio City resident Derek Schneider ’22 said he has frequently ordered a lot of food to his house during the pandemic and will continue to do so to protect his own health and to help out local restaurants.
“There are many great local food options, and I would hate to see them shut down,” Schneider said. “Delivery is a great way to support the local restaurants with low risk of getting the virus.”
So far, LA County officials have not announced that they will force the closing of other small businesses, but there will be capacity limits, social distancing and a mask mandate.