19 Mar 2020
Following Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’s executive order and to combat the spread of COVID-19, the City of Key West has directed all bars and nightclubs to cease operation. This includes bars operating ancillary to any hotel, guest house, or bed and breakfast. All restaurant facilities are limited to take out and delivery only.
The City is also restricting access to City-owned properties which generally attract social gatherings in groups of more than 10 people. This includes: Mallory Square during the traditional Sunset Celebration hours, the Southernmost Point, and Smathers Beach will be closed.
According to Monroe County Board of County Commissioners, transient rentals of any duration are not allowed: Hotels, motels, guesthouses, campgrounds, RV parks, timeshares, vacation homes, marina slips, etc. If you are staying in lodging that is not your house and not a long term rental and you do not live here or provide essential services here in Monroe County, you are to leave by 6 p.m. on Sunday, March 22. If you are in a long term lease at a vacation home property, more than a month, you are allowed to stay for the duration of your lease, you cannot extend the lease at this time.
If you have plans to come down today, tomorrow, next week, you are NOT allowed, it does not matter how long the duration of your stay was going to be. NO ONE SHOULD BE TRAVELING AT THIS TIME FOR LEISURE TRAVEL OR DAY TRIPS!
City of Key West issued a new order to close down all non-essential retail and commercial establishments as of 5 p.m. on Monday, March 23, 2020.
The Monroe County Office of Emergency Management announced Monday morning that all Florida Keys fishing bridges are closed due to an FWC directive and all public boat ramps are closed to visitors due to a directive that says that Monroe County is closed to visitors due to increased threats of COVD-19.
03/24/2020 update: Governor Ron DeSantis issued Executive Order 20-80, directing all persons whose point of departure originates from outside the State of Florida in an area with substantial community spread, to include the New York Tri-State Area (Connecticut, New Jersey and New York), and entering the State of Florida through airports to isolate or quarantine for a period of 14 days from the time of entry into the State of Florida or the duration of the person’s presence in the State of Florida, whichever is shorter.
Concerned about limiting exposure to coronavirus, the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office is coordinating the implementation of southbound traffic stops at mile marker 112.5 on the Florida Keys Overseas Highway, and on State Road 905 (Card Sound Road), to restrict access to the Florida Keys and to reinforce the island chain’s closure to visitors and non-residents.
The stations are to begin operations by no later than early Friday. Only residents, property owners, and those actively involved in work in the Florida Keys will be admitted, including fuel tankers, delivery, and grocery trucks.
Proof of residency can be demonstrated with a resident reentry sticker, local identification, utility bill, deed, lease or tax bill. Those actively engaged in work in the Florida Keys, such as construction workers, will need to show a letter from their employer, employee identification, a paystub, or current construction contract in the Keys. First responders, healthcare workers, and military actively engaged in work in the Keys will need proper IDs.
Long delays are possible at checkpoints and officials advise not to call 911 with non-emergency questions about U.S. 1.
Current Closures and Canceled Operations in Key West
- Key West ferry terminal is closed and Key West Express has suspended its operation.
- City recreational facilities are also closed. This includes the Martin Luther King, Jr. Pool, the Douglass Gym, the PAL Gym, all recreational fields, and playgrounds.
- City’s free bus Duval Loop has also suspended its operation.
- Attractions and activities which support social gatherings to ten or more people in a limited area and operate within or from the City of Key West. These include gymnasiums, fitness studios, movie theaters, museums, sightseeing vehicles carrying ten or more passengers and/or crew, attraction tour vessels and charter boats carrying ten or more passengers and/or crew, commercial motor coaches, tour buses and similar vehicles carrying ten or more passengers and /or crew.
- Many upcoming public events and festivals are canceled or postponed.
Last updated: March 25, 2020 at 11 a.m.
From the Dept of Health: There are now two presumptive positive travel-related COVID-19 cases located in the Florida Keys.
Update 3/20/20 9:24a: The case is located in the Upper Keys, according to FDOH. They really cannot break it down further than this due to patient privacy.
The CDC still has not confirmed the case. It was done by a commercial lab, and it did test positive in the commercial lab.
Everyone the patient had been in contact with has been contacted. All of the CDC guidelines for patient and people who have been in contact with the patient are being followed.
FROM FDOH: The Florida Department of Health in Monroe County (DOH-Monroe) received a presumptive positive lab report of COVID-19 (coronavirus disease) in a 54-year-old female resident of Key West in Monroe County. This is Monroe County’s second presumptive positive case. This case has not yet been confirmed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) lab. All indications of this infection indicate that it was acquired from her travel from France. This individual is isolated at her home and will continue to remain isolated until cleared by the Department. She is expected to make a full recovery.
Grocery stores have very limited inventory and in some cases, products (meat, eggs, toilet paper etc.) may not be available at all.
For most up-to-date information regarding COVID-19 in Monroe County, please go to the Monroe County Emergency Management website.
Last update: 03/25/2020