Hot Colorado weather, a holiday, and COVID-19. A weekend combination we have not seen before. The state health department issued the following press release with some safety tips. Use them for yourself, or share them with someone who might need them.
As Coloradans get ready to celebrate Independence Day weekend, state officials ask everyone to continue acting responsibly to limit the spread of COVID-19 and to follow all fire restrictions. Colorado has made great progress, but we don’t want our summer fun to result in more cases. We all share the responsibility for protecting the workers we interact with, our loved ones, and higher-risk populations. While celebrating, Coloradans should:
- Wear a face-covering when around others.
- Convene only in small groups.
- Maintain 6 feet of physical distancing.
- Follow all local COVID-19 guidelines and fire restrictions. To check fire conditions and restrictions, visit www.colorado.gov/dfpc/fire-restriction-information
- Avoid risky activities that could lead to COVID-19 exposures or physical injuries. To learn about how to stay safe and assess risks, visit covid19.colorado.gov/risks-benefits
“With the freedom that we celebrate this weekend comes responsibility,” said Scott Bookman, the state health department’s Incident Commander for COVID-19. “We hope everyone will keep taking the daily preventive steps -- especially wearing masks and practicing physical distancing -- to protect themselves and their communities. And with people out picnicking and barbecuing, it’s crucial to think ahead and plan for frequent hand-washing.”
Coloradans who choose to travel should check with the local public health agency at their destination to make sure they are up to date on guidelines, restrictions, and COVID-19 related rules. Those looking to explore the vast, great outdoors should check out COTREX to see what trails, trailheads, and activities are allowed on state and federal public lands -- and to see which places are not crowded.
Coloradans also should take steps to prevent fires. It’s fire season, and this year Coloradans need to be especially careful, both due to high fire danger and the added risks and complexity that COVID-19 adds to the equation. The actions of all Coloradans can prevent situations where people have to evacuate their homes and firefighters and first responders have to deploy to camps. Additionally, we want to prevent air pollution from smoke, which could impact those who are at higher risk for severe illness.
Public officials are also asking Coloradans to avoid risky behaviors this weekend to maintain our current sufficient levels of emergency response capacity for hospitals, search and rescue, and first responders.
“We really need everyone to get through this weekend with all of their fingers intact,” Bookman said. “Usually we see a lot of emergency room visits on Independence Day. Right now our hospital capacity is good, but we need people to play it safe and stay out of the hospital if you can.”
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