Seattle is now subject to perhaps the most strict event regulations in the U.S. as a result of concerns surrounding the coronavirus that causes COVID-19. Governor Jay Inslee has imposed a ban on gatherings of over 250 people in Washington's King, Snohomish and Pierce counties.

“This is an unprecedented public health situation and we can’t wait until we’re in the middle of it to slow it down,” said Inslee during a conference on Wednesday. “We’ve got to get ahead of the curve. One main defense is to reduce the interaction of people in our lives.”

Seattle nightclubs have yet to announce how they will proceed in light of the new ban. Q Nightclub has an 650-person capacity, while Showbox SoDo stands at 1,150.

The novel coronavirus first broke out in Wuhan, China in December of last year. As the number of confirmed cases worldwide has grown to exceed 120,000, the World Health Organization officially declared it a pandemic on Wednesday. Although presently the fatality rate sits at 3.6% and mainly endangers the elderly and those with pre-existing conditions, the true threat is how the spread ties up healthcare resources as areas with the most widespread outbreaks report extreme hospital bed shortages.

Washington State has seen the most significant coronavirus outbreak in the entire U.S. thus far. As of this writing the statewide COVID-19 infection case total sits at 283 according to the Department of Health. Washington's death count of 26 is disproportionately high relative to other locations on account of the virus infecting many living in a Kirkland retirement community called Life Care Center.

Those living in locations such as Seattle where heavy outbreaks have occurred are encouraged to practice extreme social distancing (remaining six feet away from others at all times), wash their hands for more than 20 seconds at numerous points throughout the day, and avoid touching their faces.

H/T: Kiro 7