Gov. Gary Herbert declares state of emergency for hospital overcrowding, case surge

Governor and Utah Department of Health Issue Statewide Mask Mandate, Pause Extracurricular Activities, Ask Utahns to Limit Gatherings to Household Only

Following weeks of continued stress on Utah’s hospital networks due to a rise in cases of COVID-19, Gov. Gary R. Herbert has declared a new State of Emergency to address hospital overcrowding. 

The situation is dire and unsustainable. We must take action now to protect our hospitals and healthcare workers and to avoid further devastation on our families, communities, and businesses. 

Along with the State of Emergency, the governor and Utah Department of Health have issued concurrent executive and public health orders to curb the surge of cases in Utah.

View the press releaseView our explanation pageView the public health order

The orders are effective Monday, Nov. 9 and will remain in effect until Nov. 23, 2020

1. The entire state is now under a mask mandate.

statewide mask mandate is now in effect indoors and outdoors anytime you are within 6 feet of someone from another household.
  • You must wear a face mask indoors and outdoors anytime you are within 6 feet of anyone from another household. This means you must wear a face mask anytime you are around people you don’t live with.
  • Customers, patrons and employees of businesses must wear a face mask.

Even after the orders issued today expire, the mask mandate will be extended for the foreseeable future.

2. Casual social gatherings are only allowed with people you live with until November 23, 2020. 

Keep gatherings to your same household only

This does not apply to work, school or religious services, where masking and physical distancing are already enforced.

You should cancel plans with extended family and friends for the next two weeks. Telework if you can.

Businesses and restaurants are not shut down because of this, but if you go out to eat, it should only be with people from your home.

  • Businesses must post signage that lists COVID-19 symptoms and face mask and physical distancing requirements.
  • Event hosts must require masks of all participants.
  • Restaurants will require at least 6 feet of distance between household groups or seating parties. 
  • Bars must stop serving alcohol at 10 p.m. 

3. All school extracurricular activities, sports and clubs are on hold for the duration of the orders. 

Youth and high school sports and activities are temporarily on hold
  • No organized or school-sponsored extracurricular activities, including sports and intramural events. Currently scheduled high school football games are allowed to continue with increased restrictions.
  • No private, recreation, or club sports and athletic events.
  • After November 23, 2020, it is anticipated weekly testing of participants in high school sports will be implemented.
  • Intercollegiate sporting events are allowed due to already enforced health requirements.

4. College students, who either live on campus or attend at least one in-person class per week, are required to be tested for COVID-19 weekly. 

Weekly testing on college campuses will begin soon.
  • K-12 schools are open for in-person learning.
  • College and university students who live on campus or attend an in-person class will be tested for COVID-19 each week.
  • Testing is encouraged to begin as soon as possible, but must be implemented by the beginning of spring semester.

“This is a sacrifice for all of us. But if we make it, it will make all the difference for our overworked healthcare workers, who desperately need our help.”

Utah Gov. Gary Herbert