Gov. Jay Inslee announced Saturday that masks will be legally required in Yakima County.
The move comes as Yakima recorded an alarming increase in cases over the past day.
"This is, frankly, a desperate situation for public health, for our ability to reopen Yakima which we want to do, and for the health and safety of the entire state of Washington, because as Yakima County goes, so goes the rest of the state," Inslee said in a Saturday press conference.
The spike of more than 200 cases in one day is an extraordinary jump for a rural county, and has happened twice in June in Yakima. By comparison, King County saw an increase of 62 cases in the latest one-day count from Friday, which was also an uptick.
ICU patients are now being sent to Seattle hospitals because there's not enough medical staff in Yakima for the surge.
Along with announcing the state's first legal requirement that people wear face coverings outside the home, Inslee told businesses to refuse service to anyone who refuses to follow the law. "No mask, no service," he said.