March 15, 2020 / 6:12 AM / 17 days ago

U.S. city Hoboken announces night curfew, restricts service in bars, restaurants due to coronavirus

(Reuters) - The U.S. city of Hoboken, across the Hudson River from New York City, on Saturday announced a night curfew starting March 16 and ordered bars and restaurants to conduct only delivery services amid the ongoing coronavirus outbreak.

In a statement, Mayor Ravi Bhalla said all residents of Hoboken, New Jersey, will be required to remain in their homes between 10 pm and 5 am, “except for emergencies, or if you are required to work by your employer”.

The mayor said that bars and restaurants in the city will not be allowed to serve food from Sunday, 11 a.m. local time. However, they will be allowed to conduct delivery services.

“I received a call from our police chief Kenneth Ferrante notifying me of a bar fight in downtown Hoboken, with at least one person falling in and out of consciousness, and our police having to wait for over 30 minutes for an ambulance to arrive, because our EMS is inundated with service calls,” Bhalla said.

“This is unfortunately a contributing factor why we cannot continue bar operations which can trigger calls for service that are delayed in part because of this public health crisis.”

Hoboken reported its first case of coronavirus on Friday.

More than 2,900 cases of coronavirus and at least 57 deaths have been reported in the United States, according to a tally by Johns Hopkins University.

Reporting by Shubham Kalia in Bengaluru; Editing by Michael Perry

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