Turner Street

Officials closed off the Turner Street bridge into downtown Beaufort to vehicular traffic in an effort to keep visitors away from town to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus. (Elise Clouser photo)

BEAUFORT — Beaufort officials have amended the town’s state of emergency to try and further restrict the flow of visitors to town and prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Mayor Rett Newton announced the restrictions Sunday in a video on the town’s Facebook page and said the intent is to further protect residents.

The change follows an earlier stay-at-home order in which the town attempted to limit the movements of residents, except for those engaging in essential business. The order went into effect March 25. Gov. Roy Cooper announced a statewide stay-at-home order Friday.

The town has stressed good respiratory hygiene and social distancing to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Beginning at 5 p.m. Tuesday, all nonessential public and private gatherings of any number outside a single household or residential unit are prohibited; travel into town is limited to Carteret County; visitors are prohibited; essential businesses must take proactive approaches to observe social distancing; passengers on transient vessels cannot leave marine properties; marinas can only provide service to recreational boaters who are county residents; hotels can only provide lodging to essential workers, those in quarantine or those caring for resident family members; short-term rentals are prohibited; and checkpoints may be operated by police to restrict entrance into town.

If checkpoints are instituted, the town requests drivers and passengers leave their windows rolled up and all adult occupants present drivers licenses by holding them up to the closed windows.

The latest order remains in effect until Wednesday, April 29.

(1) comment


"Your papers, please" is a symptom of life in a police state. But we don’t need a police state to fight a public health crisis. We should be very wary about government telling us they need to take our liberties away to keep us safe, and that they’ll only take those liberties away for a limited amount of time. This almost never happens. We must insist that our politicians hang their Mussolini costumes back up in the closet and act like Americans again.

Welcome to the discussion.

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