March 23, 2020 — The City of Astoria encourages people to safely enjoy parks, trails and natural areas with social distancing modifications in place. To comply with Governor Kate Brown’s guidance on limiting the spread of COVID 19, the City is temporarily closing all play structures, sport courts, swings and other playground equipment at all park locations.
The COVID-19 virus can survive on hard surfaces like plastic or steel for up to 72 hours, making play structures particularly problematic because these areas cannot be adequately disinfected throughout the day to prevent the threat of transmission.
“Our first obligation is to provide for the continued safety of our residents and this step is a necessary means in reducing or preventing community spread of the virus” says Jonah Dart-McLean, acting Director of Parks and Recreation
Signs are being posted this week at all parks and sports courts; caution tape or other tools may be used to discourage use at high-traffic locations.
Compliance and cooperation are appreciated to help “flatten the curve” of new transmissions and keep hospital systems from being overwhelmed by COVID-19, which is highly contagious and poses severe health complications for about 20 percent of people who test positive.
Walking, hiking, biking, running and other park activities that do not involve bodily contact are optimal choices for youth and adults seeking outdoor activity. Other activities should be avoided or limited to groups of no more than 10 people and spacing should be limited to 6’ apart at all times.
The CDC cautions parents to minimize play dates among children at this time. If held, groups should be kept small and limited to those taking social distancing precautions.
To remain educated on COVID-19 prevention and response, visit U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Oregon Health Authority and Clatsop County Public Health