Savannah mask mandate downgraded to advisory, Mayor Johnson says

Coronavirus

SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) — The City of Savannah downgraded its mask mandate to an advisory Tuesday, Mayor Van Johnson announced on Twitter.

“Citizens are advised to wear masks whenever necessary. We will continue to follow the science,” Johnson says on Twitter.

The city’s move back to a mask advisory — first put in place in early June — simply encourages residents to wear masks while indoors. At his weekly press conference last week, Johnson said masks will continue to be a part of his daily wardrobe, and will continue to wear one when around people he doesn’t know.

The mask mandate was then reimplemented in late July, requiring visitors to mask up while inside city buildings and while riding in vehicles on guided tours. The city stopped short of forcing local businesses to require face coverings, instead, simply encouraging them to do so.

Chatham County’s community transmission index — which accounts for the number of infections per 100,000 residents in the past two weeks — dipped below a high of 100 on Nov. 2 for the first time since mid-July 13. It then raised above 100 for two consecutive days, but has been below 100 since Nov. 9.

Since Friday, Chatham County reported 31 new cases of coronavirus and the Coastal Empire as a whole reported 58 total. Across Chatham County’s three hospitals, 11 patients were hospitalized with COVID Monday.

As it stands, 56% of Chatham County residents have received at least one dose of a COVID vaccine and 51% are fully vaccinated, according to the Georgia Department of Public Health.

This is a developing story and will be updated as more information is reported.

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