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Northam eases coronavirus restrictions in Hampton Roads

Hampton Roads rejoins the rest of Virginia in Phase 3 after health metrics improved in the region.

NORFOLK, Va. — Heightened coronavirus restrictions in Hampton Roads are officially over.

Governor Ralph Northam announced Thursday that Hampton Roads is back in Phase 3 Reopening.

Northam scaled back reopening for the region at the end of July, when case numbers and trends started getting out of hand. 

Restrictions included limiting the size of gatherings, restricting capacity at restaurants, and prohibiting alcohol sales at a certain time.

Since those restrictions went into place, Northam said that "new cases have dropped by more than half, hospitalizations have declined, and percent positivity has fallen below the statewide average."

But he also warned that we can't let our guard down now.

"We all must continue practicing social distancing, wearing facial coverings, and following all public health guidelines," Northam said in his announcement. "If we want to keep moving forward, we must stay vigilant and do the things that we know will keep our communities safe."

The current set of restrictions will expire at 11:59 p.m. Thursday, September 10.