Activity slows after Stay-at-Home order

About 36 hours into the Miller County and State-issued Stay-at-Home orders, most residents and businesses in the City of Lake Ozark seem to be taking the COVID-19 issue more seriously.

Gov. Mike Parsons issued a Stay-at-Home order Friday, April 4, and then the Miller County Health Center followed up with its own order Monday, April 6.

Non-essential businesses were closed, and activity at grocery stores, gas stations and banks was noticeably down. The Strip, which is normally bustling this time of year, was virtually shut down.  

Traffic on Bagnell Dam Blvd., Osage Beach Parkway and The Expressway was also down. However, many restaurants in Lake Ozark were still offering curbside and takeout service.

“Our local businesses are vital to our community,” Mayor Gerry Murawski said. “We sure encourage residents and visitors to take advantage of what they have to offer, and to follow special guidelines that are in place for now.”

The Miller County Health Center order is in effect until April 24, but could be extended if the coronavirus isn’t showing signs of abatement.

The Miller County order repeats the majority of the sections in the statewide order and adds specificity to implied sections, such as if non-essential businesses cannot provide adequate space for social distancing, then they shall cease provision of such non-essential services unless a waiver is obtained from the Department of Economic Development.

The full order can be found at http://millercountyhealth.com/covid-19

Police Chief Gary Launderville reminds the public that any perceived violations of the Stay-at-Home order should be reported to the Miller County Health Center (573-369-2359), not the Lake Ozark Police Department. The Health Center has jurisdiction during the duration of the order, he noted. Anyone calling the LOPD to complain will be redirected to the Miller County Health Center.

In addition to the strategies required in this order, there are other advised activities that you should do:
• Wash your hands frequently for at least 20 seconds and utilize hand sanitizer with 60 percent or more alcohol when hand washing is not an option.
• When you purchase food, get enough for two weeks if you have the storage. This limits the amount of times necessary to shop. Don’t browse when shopping, make a list, go by yourself, get what is necessary and go home.
• Assist your high-risk friends and family by offering to get their groceries. (65 years or older, respiratory disease, heart disease, diabetes)
• If you are sick, stay home! Avoid exposure with those you live with by distancing yourself and wearing a mask. Call your health care provider before going. If you must go to the doctor or pharmacy, it is recommended to wear a mask. Every hospital system serving Miller County offers a drive-through testing option.
• Abide by all recommendations to isolate or quarantine by your health care provider or public health.

“All of these activities are extremely important in preventing the spread of disease,” the Health Center said. “The better we practice these activities, the sooner the pandemic will come to an end.”