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Governor says ‘extreme measures’ possible if COVID surge worsens

Published: Aug. 26, 2021 at 5:18 PM HST|Updated: Aug. 27, 2021 at 6:02 AM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Hawaii has seen nearly 16,000 COVID infections this month alone. And the state’s surge in new cases shows no signs of slowing down.

As hospitalizations mount, mayors and the governor are eyeing the possibility of more restrictions.

Hawaii County Mayor Mitch Roth will be making an announcement Friday about COVID rules. Meanwhile, Maui County Mayor Michael Victorino is still waiting approval for his proposed restrictions impacting residents and tourists.

He’s asking residents to only do essential activities for 21 days and he’s asking visitors to voluntarily stay in their resort bubbles and not visit Hana, which has been overrun with traffic.

Meanwhile, Gov. David Ige warned in a one-on-one interview with Hawaii News Now this week that if case counts continue to rise “and we push the hospitals across that line then we will have to go to more extreme measures, lockdowns and potentially shutting businesses,” said Ige.

The governor, however, refused to say where that line is or how far we are from it.

In the meantime, regular life appears be moving along with people eating in restaurants, hanging at the beach and going about their activities.

Ige is asking people to voluntarily avoid gatherings for four weeks and acknowledges government can’t be everywhere.

“We know that we can’t enforce all of the state parks and the county parks to stop the gatherings from happening,” he said.

Also this week, the governor made national headlines when he publicly asked visitors to stay away from Hawaii until case counts come down.

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