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Santa Clara County ramps up COVID guideline enforcement amid holidays

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SANTA CLARA COUNTY, Calif. (KRON) — Santa Clara County is seeing the highest number of reported COVID cases since the March.

And health officials there are worried things will only get worse this holiday weekend.

COVID-19 cases are hitting record highs in Santa Clara County – with more than 500 newly reported cases a day.

And county health officials are expecting things to get worse.

“If we look back in July when we were really worried about an increase then, we saw 385 cases as a maximum. and as we have seen, our numbers are much higher. 512 cases today. Tomorrow maybe higher and we expect that to be the case,” Santa Clara County Health Officer Dr. Marty Fenstersheib said.

Officials say they understand the pandemic fatigue, but we have to continue on.

Adding that while those around you may seem healthy, that doesn’t necessarily mean they are COVID free.

“Up to 60 percent of the time when people are infecting others or are infectious themselves, they have absolutely no symptoms. So if you’re worried about staying away from somebody because they have a cough or they look sick, be more worried about people that are close to you that have no symptoms,” Santa Clara County Director of Environmental Health Michael Balliet said.

With this recent surge in numbers, health officials are urging resident to stay home and avoid gathering in large groups or traveling ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday.

They also want business owners to know, they’re ramping up enforcement.

“Our enforcement officers will be looking at a variety of things, but in particular will be looking at capacity limitations, making sure the stores aren’t overcrowded. Making sure the social distancing protocols, making sure that orange checkmark has been posted. We’ll also be looking at face coverings and enforcing face coverings at the business location.

Businesses that fail to comply with the safety orders will be fined.

And the enforcement officers will be wearing special clothing, making them easily identifiable.

And officials believe that if the proper steps are taken, the county can flatten the curve once again.

“We know that we can do this together as a community. we’ve done it before, we will do it again. But the time to act is now,” County Counsel James Williams said.

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