By Victoria Daniels
Special to the AFRO

Article last updated 6:15 p.m. on Monday March 16, 2020.

Here is what you need to know about COVID-19 in D.C. concerning cases, symptoms and closures. 

As of now, there are 17 confirmed cases in D.C. according to public health authorities.

(Photo/CDC)

The Basics:

Symptoms such as fever, cough, shortness of breath can appear 2-14 days after exposure. To prevent the spread of COVID-19, practice routine hand washing for at least 20 seconds, avoid coming in contact with people who are sick, do not touch the face with unwashed hands, use sanitizers with at least 60 percent alcohol and practice social distancing. 

Social distancing means to limit interactions with large crowds and gatherings. If you have to go out, keep six feet of distance between yourself and others. 

If you believe you have been exposed or have symptoms, call your healthcare provider before visiting a healthcare facility.

Eating, Entertainment and Nightlife

D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser said in an order released March 16 that all restaurants and bars are closed, effective at 10 p.m. that night.  Delivery and carry-out options are still available. This will be in effect until April 1. Nightclubs, multi-purpose facilities, health spas, massage establishments and theaters must also close beginning tomorrow. 

D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser (Courtesy Photo)

Public Transportation

As of March 16, Metro trains will run on all lines from Monday to Friday every 12 minutes and will maintain normal hours. Saturday trains will also run every 12 minutes during normal hours. Sunday trains will run during normal hours but operate every 15 minutes. Buses will run on a Saturday supplemental schedule during the weekdays and the weekend buses will remain unchanged. 

The Metro’s Pandemic Task Force said in a statement that the reduced service is to allow additional cleaning of trains and buses.

Museums and Attractions

All museums, attractions, theaters and other venues in D.C. are closed except for the following:
National Mall and Memorial Parks – Only the Monument and Memorial Park grounds are open
U.S Botanic Garden – Outdoor gardens and grounds are open
U.S National Arboretum – Only the grounds remain open
Glenstone – Outdoor grounds open
Madame Tussauds – Open, but being monitored

The National Cherry Blossom Festival Parade is canceled and the NBA Washington Wizards season has been suspended.

Courts

As of March 16, the District of Columbia Court of Appeals is open for all new filings, according to an order on the website by the Chief Judge. All oral arguments scheduled through March 31, have been cancelled and will be rescheduled at a later date. Emergency filings can be emailed to emergencyfilings@dcappeals.gov and new filings can be filed electronically. For all other updates, updates are listed on the website.

According to the DC Courts website, the DC Superior Court said anyone serving on a grand jury is excused for two weeks. Those individuals need to report to the US attorney’s office on March 30 for further instructions. 

Citation arraignments dates have been adjusted and are listed below: 

Places for Kids to Eat Free

Little Miner Taco announced kids can eat free from the kids menu for as long as District of Columbia Public Schools and Maryland schools are closed. They will re-open tomorrow at 11 a.m. for take out orders. 

Milk and Honey DC will offer kids free breakfast Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 10 a.m. Breakfast items include hot or cold cereal, fruit and water. 

Po Boy Jim will also allow kids to eat free from kids’ menu items including chicken fingers, shrimp basket, grilled cheese po boy and fettuccini. 

For more information regarding COVID-19 in D.C., check out the official website.