- Health authorities in Missouri said that people who were filmed at pool parties at Lake of the Ozarks over the weekend should now self-isolate.
- “Anyone who didn’t practice CDC, DHSS, and KCMO Health Department social distancing guidance should self quarantine for 14 days if they have any compassion for others,” tweeted Dr. Rex Archer, the director of health at the health department in Kansas City, Missouri.
- Footage of revelers at the popular vacation spot was shared widely on social media over the weekend.
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Health authorities in Missouri have urged people who were filmed partying at Lake of the Ozarks over Memorial Day weekend to self-isolate to reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19.
In footage that was shared widely over the weekend, lots of partygoers could be seen packed close together, enjoying the sun in pools and bars.
That violated social-distancing guidelines from the state and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention saying people should stay 6 feet away from one another to slow the spread of the coronavirus.
In a statement on Monday, Dr. Sam Page, the St. Louis County executive, condemned the behavior of people who didn’t follow the guidelines.
—Rex Archer, M.D., M.P.H. (@RexArcherMD) May 26, 2020
“This reckless behavior endangers countless people and risks setting us back substantially from the progress we have made in slowing the spread of COVID-19,” Page said.
In a travel advisory, the St. Louis County Public Health Department said that “any person who has travelled and engaged in this behavior should self-quarantine for 14 days or until they receive a negative test result for COVID-19.”
Dr. Rex Archer, the director of health at the health department in Kansas City, Missouri, gave similar advice.
“Anyone who didn’t practice CDC, DHSS, and KCMO Health Department social distancing guidance should self quarantine for 14 days if they have any compassion for others,” Archer tweeted, sharing a video of partygoers.
While officials in Kansas City and St. Louis issued warnings about the behavior, they could not directly take action because the lake is beyond their jurisdiction.
According to The Associated Press, the lake is a popular vacation spot for people from St. Louis city and county, which have accounted for more than half of the 12,000 coronavirus cases in Missouri.
In a statement on Monday, Sheriff Tony Helms of Camden County, where most of the lakeside resorts and bars are, said that violating social-distancing guidelines was not a crime, “therefore the sheriff’s office has no authority to enforce actions.”
“We expect residents and visitors alike to exhibit personal responsibility when at the lake,” Helms said. “We also respect the right of citizens to move freely around the lake and take responsibility to protect themselves from any expected dangers related to COVID-19.”