Oregon Expands Mask Requirement To Outdoor Spaces

By OPB Staff (OPB)
Portland, Ore. July 13, 2020 6 p.m.

UPDATE (2 p.m. PT) — The Oregon Health Authority announced on July 13 that there have been 280 new COVID-19 diagnoses in the state, and three new deaths due to the virus. Since the start of the pandemic 12,438 people in Oregon have been diagnosed with the coronavirus.

Oregon’s 235th COVID-19 death is a 67-year-old man in Marion County who tested positive on July 8 and died July 11, in his residence. He had underlying conditions.


Oregon’s 236th COVID-19 death is a 76-year-old man in Clackamas County who tested positive on July 1 and died July 4, in his residence. He had underlying conditions.

Oregon’s 237th COVID-19 death is a 54-year-old man in Umatilla County who died on July 8 in his residence and tested positive post-mortem on July 9. He had underlying conditions.

Related: COVID-19 In Oregon: By The Numbers

Oregon's COVID-19 caseload keeps climbing

More than 2,000 people have been diagnosed with the new coronavirus in Oregon in the past week, the largest spike in new confirmed and presumptive cases the state has seen in any seven-day period since the start of the pandemic, according to Oregon Health Authority figures released Sunday.

Oregon COVID-19 Map

Jacob Fenton, The Accountability Project at the Investigative Reporting Workshop 

More data on how the COVID-19 pandemic is spreading through Oregon.

Clark County reports 106 new cases

Health officials in Clark County, Washington, on July 13 reported 106 new confirmed cases of COVID-19, and 1 new death. Since the start of the pandemic, 1,272 people have been diagnosed with the coronavirus in the county, and 33 have died.

The latest available data from the Washington Department of Health shows 40,656 people have been diagnosed with coronavirus in the state and 1,438 are known to have died of it. As of July 13, COVID-19 has led to the hospitalization of 4,751 people in Washington.

Oregon introduces new mask rules

Oregonians are required to wear masks while outdoors if they're unable to maintain at least six feet of distance from others under new rules from the governor.

Gov. Kate Brown announced the updated face-covering requirement Monday amid an ongoing spike in coronavirus cases in the state. The state has seen more than 2,000 new coronavirus cases in the past seven days — the largest single-week spike since the pandemic reached Oregon in March.


Related: Oregon's Mask Rules Expanding To Crowded Outdoor Spaces As COVID Cases Spike

The updated rules follow the lead of several other states, including California and Washington, which have tightened regulations in response to growing outbreaks. The update comes less than two weeks after Brown ordered people statewide to wear masks in indoor spaces open to the public. The mandate remains voluntary for children between ages 3 and 12, while children under 2 aren't required or requested to wear masks.

Brown also announced new statewide limits to the size of indoor gatherings. Under the updated policy, indoor gatherings are capped at 10 people. The limit does not apply to businesses. Not following the new mask rules could net a person up to 30 days in jail and a $1,250 fine. Read Dirk VanderHart's story for more on the expanded coronavirus restrictions.

Deschutes County Circuit Court considers moving trials to fairgrounds

The Deschutes County Circuit Court is considering holding jury trials at the fairgrounds in Redmond, The Bulletin reports. The Deschutes County Courthouse in Bend hasn't held an in-person jury trial since the coronavirus outbreak reached Oregon in March. The court has only held bench trials since Oregon Supreme Court Chief Justice Martha Walters' order in April that required courts to reopen while limiting health risks.

Jury trials require that many people be in the same room — cause for concern amid a pandemic that spreads quickly when people come in close contact. That's forced the Deschutes County Circuit Court to consider alternative options if it hopes to stay in line with the state's strict laws for speedy trials.

The fairgrounds are an option, according to Presiding Judge Wells Ashby, but many considerations need addressing before the court can hold trials there. Among them is evaluating the costs associated with renting the equipment needed to turn the fairgrounds into an adequate courtroom.

Portland Timbers resume play Monday

The Portland Timbers return to the pitch in the

MLS is Back Tournament

on Monday, facing the LA Galaxy at ESPN’s Wide World of Sports complex in Orlando, Florida. The tournament game will be the first match the team has played in nearly four months since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic.

Related: Portland Timbers Return To Play, Despite Rising Coronavirus Cases

Major League Soccer is the first of North America's major men's professional sports leagues to return to play, despite the country's surge in COVID-19 cases. But Timbers players and staff said they've been vigilant with maintaining strict health protocols such as wearing masks and distancing within their team bubble. They're also being regularly tested.

“The priority has always been, and continues to be, the health of the players and the health of our environment in the Portland Timbers,” Timbers head coach Giovanni Savarese said in a media briefing Saturday.

In light of the pandemic, players and staff will operate in near-empty stadiums, as opposed to in front of roaring crowds.  Read the full story here.

Oregon Symphony cancels rest of 2020 season

One of Oregon’s premier arts organizations is laying down the conductor’s baton for 2020: The

Oregon Symphony

has announced the cancellation of all in-person concerts and events through the end of the year because of COVID-19.

Related: Oregon Symphony Takes A Bow, Cancels Concerts Until 2021

That includes 43 performances in Portland and Salem between now and January. The symphony is the largest arts organization in the Portland area to take such steps.

The orchestra furloughed and laid off staff and musicians in March, but was able to hire employees back with several million dollars from the federal Paycheck Prevention Program. Still, it was only a short-term fix: that money ran out in June. Read the full story here.