New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said he’ll close businesses and schools in nine neighborhoods in Brooklyn and Queens where there’s been a surge in coronavirus infections.
The school closures will start Wednesday for an initial period of two weeks, with the possibly of being extended for four weeks, he said.
Indoor and outdoor dining will also be closed in these areas. Houses of worship will stay opened with restrictions, he said.
The mayor’s plan must be approved by Governor Andrew Cuomo, who earlier on Sunday announced that the state would take over direct enforcement in 20 hot spots that are pushing infections to their highest level since the lockdown.
On Sunday, New York — which contained the deadliest outbreak in the nation early in the virus’s spread — reported its sixth consecutive day of new infections of 1,000 or more.
De Blasio said another 11 areas are on a watchlist, he said, where business continues except for what he called “high-risk” activities.
“We can avoid a second wave in NYC,” he said at a press briefing on Sunday. “This is taken out of an abundance of caution.”
The mayor said the most aggressive actions will be considered, including rewinding back to Phases One through Four of the reopening plan.
“You don’t do this lightly — you do this when the facts demand it,” De Blasio said, adding that he has sounded a number of warnings recently. “We had warned people of more restrictive measures and now, we’re imposing them.”
The areas are listed by postal ZIP codes and include parts of Far Rockaway, Borough Park, Midwood, Gravesend, Bensonhurst, Sheepshead Bay and Kew Gardens.