UPDATE: Governor Mike DeWine announced Ohio Department of Health Director Dr. Amy Acton will soon sign an order closing all restaurants and bars in the state to dine-in customers. That order will be effective at 9 p.m. Sunday.

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WJW) — Governor DeWine is considering closing down restaurants and bars throughout the state of Ohio in response to the coronavirus.

When asked if he was going to close down bars and restaurants during a Sunday interview on “Meet the Press,” he said the state was “certainly looking at that.”

Here is his response:

“We started off last week closing the schools, we reduced the number of people gathering together to 100. We’ve restricted access to our nursing homes, to our prisons — We’re taking tough steps…I think it’s very instructive. I know people have talked about this before, but I just looked at a chart, you look at the pandemic of 1918 and compare the two cities of St. Louis and Philadelphia, and you saw Philadelphia didn’t get it. The thing I saw in the chart is Philadelphia was only two weeks behind St. Louis…What it tells us is, you know all people I’ve been consulting — from Dr. Amy Acton, who’s doing a great job as my health director, to national experts — they say, ‘Look, every day counts so much, you just cannot wait. You’ve got to move very, very quickly.’ These are tough decisions. We are inconveniencing people, it’s making people’s lives change, but we’ve got to save lives. Everything we’re doing is to save lives.”


So far Governor DeWine has banned gatherings of more than 100 people and closed schools for at least three weeks, which he now says could become longer.

Ohio is not the only area looking at shutting down restaurants and bars. According to our affiliate FOX 5, Governor Andrew Cuomo is asking bars, restaurants and gymnasiums in New York City to voluntarily close. This comes after Cuomo confirmed that New York has 729 positive cases of coronavirus in the state, which is currently the most in the nation. NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio also said Sunday that a citywide lockdown is possible.