EL PASO, Texas — El Paso County officials ordered a two-week shutdown of non-essential activities Thursday after the area’s medical resources were overwhelmed by the illness caused by the novel coronavirus.
County Judge Ricardo Samaniego announced the measure during a virtual news conference Thursday. Among the non-essential services ordered to be closed, effective at midnight Thursday, are tattoo, hair and nail salons, as well as gyms and in-person dining. He also appealed to residents to avoid all non-essential activities. Grocery and drug stores, funeral homes, health care services and government activities were among the activities deemed essential.
Samaniego said all election-related activities, including campaigns and voting, also were deemed essential activities.
“Our hospitals are at capacity, our medical professionals are overwhelmed, and if we don’t respond we will see unprecedented levels of death,” said Samaniego, the county’s top elected official.