MANCHESTER-BY-THE-SEA — Police Chief Todd J. Fitzgerald would like to remind residents of the importance of practicing social distancing in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Social distancing — maintaining a distance of approximately 6 feet from other people — has proven effective at slowing the spread of COVID-19.
“By following guidelines set by local and state public health officials, we can all do our part to help keep the community safe while enjoying the warmer weather,” said Chief Fitzgerald. “We will continue to monitor the situation and share information as it becomes available.”
As the weather continues to improve, outdoor gatherings are viewed as safer, but social distancing techniques should still be practiced, and all sports/recreation equipment and toys should be cleaned regularly.
Social distancing will help to minimize exposure among people, especially given that COVID-19 is highly contagious and people may be contagious prior to exhibiting symptoms.
Families should practice social distancing with their children and follow these guidelines from state and local health officials:
- Families should not hold “play dates” and those in need of childcare should limit the number of families involved as much as possible.
- Practice social distancing techniques with children and have them practice among themselves
- Clean and sanitize toys, video game controllers and all touch surfaces regularly
Teens are included in this group, and activities like bike riding and hiking/walking are viewed as safer alternatives to gathering at movie theaters, retail stores and other indoor venues.
Chief Fitzgerald would also like to remind residents that while some downtown parking limits have been relaxed, beach parking is now limited to Manchester-by-the- Sea residents only.
The Board of Selectmen and other town officials will discuss additional actions that may be put in place to stymie the spread of COVID-19 during a virtual meeting on Sunday, March 22 at 4 p.m. Information about the meeting, along with the link and information on how to view the meeting can be found here.
The novel coronavirus has sparked an outbreak of respiratory disease with symptoms that may appear 2-14 days after exposure including fever, cough and shortness of breath, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and information indicates that most COVID-19 illness is mild. If someone is displaying symptoms, they should not come to work or school and they are advised to contact their primary care physician.
The COVID-19 situation is very fluid, and new information and guidelines are being posted by the CDC on a regular basis. The CDC offers the following guidance for how COVID-19 spreads.
In an effort to prevent the spread of flu, colds and other respiratory illnesses, residents should follow the recommended actions from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH):
- For a minimum of 20 seconds, wash your hands frequently with soap and hot water
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands
- Avoid close contact with those who are sick
- Use a tissue to cover your nose and mouth when coughing or sneezing, then throw the tissue away and wash your hands.
- Clean and disinfect objects and surfaces
- When you have a fever or are ill, stay home from work or school
The state has also set up the phone number 211 to answer questions that residents may have concerning COVID-19.