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Lanai to ease COVID-19 restrictions on Thursday

Maui County has approved an emergency order to ease COVID-19 restrictions on Lanai starting Thursday, Mayor Michael Victorino announced Tuesday.

The island of 3,000 residents will move from a “stay at home” order, which it has been under for about two weeks, to a “safer at home” order.

The new rules “encourages” residents and visitors to stay at home or their place of lodging except if they need to conduct essential activities.

“We have seen fewer positive cases on Lanai and believe the outbreak has been contained,” Victorino said in a statement. “Due to the vigilance of Lanaians, the restrictions on movement now can be lifted, although I still encourage residents and visitors to stay at home or at their place of lodging as much as possible. We continue to monitor cases on Lanai very closely, and I’m encouraged by the great amount of community testing by island residents to protect themselves and their community from the spread of COVID-19.”

The rural island didn’t report any cases until Oct. 20, then COVID-19 cases spiked on Lanai, and there have been 106 cases since then.

Travelers to Lanai will still need to quarantine for 14 days, although they can bypass the quarantine with a negative pre-travel COVID-19 test.

An amendment to the emergency rules also identifies neck gaiters worn doubled-over or with at least two layers of fabric as facial coverings.

The amended rules will be in effect until Nov. 30.

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