CHESAPEAKE, Va. – As Memorial Day holiday weekend approaches, more people will be heading to the Virginia Beach Oceanfront. While Virginia Governor Ralph Northam is ordering people to maintain their social distance and encouraging people to wear face coverings during Phase One of the reopening process, not everyone will be in compliance, and that has local doctors concerned.
“If you're out in these crowds, make sure you're wearing a mask,” said News 3 medical expert Dr. Ryan Light.
Dr. Light said the mask is key to stopping the spread of COVID-19 from those who are infected, especially people who have coronavirus but are unaware because they aren’t showing any symptoms.
“The mask protects you from spreading it around,” he said. “I would hate to know that I gave someone COVID-19 and they had to be on a ventilator, or possibly died from it. So I'm going to protect you with everything that I have.”
Governor Northam announced last week the Virginia Beach Oceanfront could open for recreation starting Friday, May 22, the kickoff to Memorial Day weekend. While restrictions like social distancing, no group sports, no alcohol, no large groups and parking allowing only 50% occupancy will be in place, it will be difficult to enforce.
Dr. Light said if you choose to venture out, the best way to protect yourself and others is to wear a face covering and maintain social distancing.
“Protect your brothers and sisters out there so that you're not transmitting [COVID-19] when you don't know it,” he said.