Note: Article updated Mar 12 9:00pm ET to include New Mexico and San Francisco school closures, Disney World’s announced closure, as well as Arlington National Cemetery and the Smithsonian Museum. And Mar 13 9:00am ET to include Michigan school closures.
The states of Maryland, Ohio, Kentucky, New Mexico and Michigan have closed all K-12 schools for at least two weeks in response to the coronavirus pandemic. (MD for 2 weeks, OH, KY, NM & MI for 3 weeks.)
The Maryland school closure came as the state reported its first case of community spread of COVID-19, that is, a patient contracted the virus from an unknown source not related to travel, the Baltimore Sun reports.
A hospital in Bel Air, MD will open a drive-in COVID-19 testing center for physician-ordered tests, the Baltimore Sun reports. The hospital, University of Maryland Upper Chesapeake Health, will use its ER parking lot to collecting samples from patients, who will be able to remain in their cars.
In Ohio, governor Mike DeWine has also banned public gatherings over 100 people, 13ABC reported. The ban will not apply to airports and other major transit centers, nor medical facilities or retail/grocery stores, 13ABC reported.
In New Mexico, the state’s public education department said all schools would close for three weeks beginning Monday Mar 16. The closure announcement came after New Mexico documented six cases of COVID-19 on Mar 12, spread over three counties.
Washington governor Jay Inslee had announced on Mar 11 that all Seattle public schools would close for two weeks, but that shutdown has yet to expand to other systems or counties in the state.
According to a Mar 12 announcement, San Francisco Unified School District will also close for the next three weeks beginning Monday Mar 16, CNN reported.
Elsewhere, public spaces and venues around the country are closing down at rapid pace.
Disneyland in Anaheim, California announced on Thursday that it would close beginning Mar 14 through Mar 31. The park said it was “in the best interests of our guests and employees [to proceed] with the closure of Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure.”
Hours later, Disney Parks announced it would close all parks in Orlando, Florida, including Walt Disney World, beginning at the end of business on Sunday Mar 15 through Mar 31. Disneyland Paris Resort will also close on Mar 15.
Disney Cruise Line will suspend all new departures from Mar 14 to Mar 31, as well, the company said in the announcement.
In New York City, the Broadway League has shut down all Broadway theater performances beginning Mar 12 at 5:00pm until the week of Apr 13, Variety.com reported.
Other major closures or cancellations in the last 24 hours include:
- Arlington National Cemetery will close beginning Mar 13, but all scheduled funerals will continue, with additional safety measures.
- The NBA suspended the remainder of its 2019-2020 season on Mar 11 after a player on the Utah Jazz — Rudy Gobert — tested positive for COVID-19. Gobert’s teammate Donovan Mitchell tested positive for the virus on Mar 12.
- The NHL “paused” its season on Mar 12, with the goal to resume play as soon as is appropriate and prudent, according to commissioner Gary Bettman.
- Major League Baseball has suspended all spring training games and postponed its Opening Day at least two weeks.
- The NCAA canceled its March Madness national college basketball tournaments on Mar 12 after originally announcing a plan to play games in empty arenas.
- Two Nascar events will reportedly go on as scheduled in Atlanta and Miami, but with no fans in attendance. Only competitors, crews, officials and necessary staff will be in attendance.
- Universal Studios in California announced it would close beginning Mar 14.
- All Smithsonian museums in Washington DC and New York City will close starting Mar 14.