Speed Reads

the coronavirus crisis

California says gatherings of more than 250 people should be canceled

California officials are recommending large gatherings scheduled for the rest of the month be canceled amid the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.

The California Department of Public Health said Wednesday events with 250 people or more, including concerts, conferences, and sports events, should be canceled or postponed "for at least the remainder of the month of March." Additionally, smaller gatherings "held in venues that do not allow social distancing of six feet per person," such as those that take place in crowded auditoriums, should also be canceled.

California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) in a statement said, "Changing our actions for a short period of time will save the life of one or more people you know. That's the choice before us. Each of us has extraordinary power to slow the spread of this disease."

This guidance comes after Oregon and three Washington counties imposed bans on events with more than 250 people, and after San Francisco imposed a ban on gatherings of more than 1,000 people. The latter move prompted the Golden State Warriors to announce it would play an upcoming game without fans, although just hours later, a Utah Jazz player tested positive for the virus, and the entire NBA season was suspended. E3, the popular video game convention that was set to take place in Los Angeles this June, has also been called off.