Michigan to close casinos again as coronavirus cases surge

Casinos in the state of Michigan have been ordered to close their doors to the public again amid a rise in coronavirus cases.

Casinos in the state of Michigan will be forced to close their doors again this week under new coronavirus measures implemented by Governor Gretchen Whitmer.

Michigan’s new restrictions

The new restrictions, which were announced on 15 November by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) in an Executive Order, are intended to limit residential and non-residential gatherings across various facilities.

Under the new order, casinos in the state of Michigan will be required to close at 12:01 am on 18 November and not reopen until 8 December at the earliest.

In addition to casinos, the new order will apply to several other recreational venues including amusement parks, arcades, bingo halls, skating rinks, water parks and nightclubs.

Other entertainment venues, such as arenas, cinemas, concert halls, conference centres, sports venues, stadiums and theatres will also have to remain closed until the second week of December.

The new order was introduced after a significant increase in the number of positive coronavirus cases and coronavirus-related deaths. According to the latest figures from 14 November, there were 7,340 positive cases and 68 deaths from the virus.

Whitmer said: “Right now, there are thousands of cases a day and hundreds of deaths a week in Michigan, and the number is growing. If we don’t act now, thousands more will die, and our hospitals will continue to be overwhelmed.

“We can get through this together by listening to health experts once again and taking action right now to slow the spread of this deadly virus.”

DHHS director Robert Gordon said: “Indoor gatherings are the greatest source of spread, and sharply limiting them is our focus. The order is targeted and temporary, but a terrible loss of life will be forever unless we act.

“By coming together today, we can save thousands of lives.”

Michigan’s second casino closure

The latest announcement marks the second time that Michigan’s casinos have been forced to close as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

Michigan’s casinos initially closed their doors on 16 March and were permitted to reopen from 5 August with several health and safety measures in place which included operating at 15% capacity.

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