Coronavirus Update: 146 confirmed cases; Fulton schools closure extension; Kroger limits hours as more businesses close

The number of confirmed coronavirus (COVID-19) cases in the state has jumped to 146, according to data from the Georgia Department of Public Health. Monday’s confirmed cases totaled 121.

All Fulton County schools will likely remain closed until after spring break due to the coronavirus pandemic, Fulton County School System Superintendent Mike Looney said during a virtual March 16 meeting.  Looney said the board is not making an official decision at this time but with the uncertainty of the potential spread of the coronavirus, it is “more likely than not.” “We just don’t know much this [virus] is going to continue to disrupt our school district and our community moving forward,” Looney said. Looney said the district has no plans to cancel spring break, which runs through April 6 through April 10. All schools will remain closed at least until the end of March, as Gov. Brian Kemp issued an executive order on March 16 closing all public schools in Georgia until March 31.

Empty toilet paper shelves at the Kroger on Ponce. (Photo by Jacob Nguyen)

Kroger supermarkets have announced they will temporarily shift hours from 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. to give workers time to clean and restock shelves. More businesses, including Ponce City Market, AMC Theaters and Macy’s, have closed in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak. Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms’ executive order limiting occupancy to 50 or less has meant many restaurants have closed their dining rooms and switched to take-out or delivery only. Some fine dining restaurants, like recently opened Ruby Chow’s and Fifth Group Restaurants (South City Kitchen, ecco, El Taco) have temporarily closed their doors. It’s best to call or check social media to see if a business or restaurant is open before you go out.

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