NEW JERSEY — Four New Jersey municipalities are going on lockdown as coronavirus– related deaths near 300 in the Garden State.
Officials in Newark, Irvington, Orange and East Orange say just telling residents to social distance hasn’t been enough, so now police will enforce it.
Authorities in the four cities will work together to patrol the borders, stopping unnecessary car travel and foot traffic, as well as conducting wellness checks to ensure people are practicing social distancing.
Newark Police have so far closed 16 businesses and issued 250 summons to residents for hanging out in parks, playgrounds and on street corners.
Fines will range from $30 to $200 per ticket, with second-time offenders being referred to the prosecutor’s office and possibly charged with obstruction of the law.
Building inspectors and the health department will also check senior centers and essential businesses for cleanliness.
As of Tuesday, New Jersey has a total of 18,696 COVID-19 cases and 267 deaths linked to the novel coronavirus.