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Floyd County decreases restaurant capacity, orders bars to close at 10 p.m.

The county's 7-day positivity rate has increased to 9.23%.

NEW ALBANY, Ind. — Bars and restaurants in Floyd County are facing new restrictions as Indiana continues to see an increase in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations.

The Floyd County Health Department has ordered all restaurants to decrease to 75% capacity through Dec. 21. Additionally, all bars must close at 10 p.m. local time every evening.

"The intent of this order is to continue to provide a safe environment for all people in Floyd County, and avoid the spread of COVID-19," Floyd County Health Officer Thomas Harris said. "This will protect public health in Floyd County."

Indiana reported 84 deaths Tuesday, along with 5,541 new positive cases of COVID-19. The state's 7-day positivity rate has increased to 12%. While under the state's rate, Floyd County has also seen an increase in positivity rate to 9.23%.

Harris said the restrictions are necessary to avoid an even greater increase in cases, as avoiding large crowds and social distancing are still some of the most effective strategies to stopping the spread of COVID-19.

Other businesses are also encouraged to allow employees to work from home if possible. Harris said restrictions could be extended or cut short depending on the pandemic.

Health care professionals continue to encourage people to frequently wash hands or sanitize, wear facial coverings, social distance, avoid touching the face and stay home if there is a chance of illness.

RELATED: Indiana daily COVID-19 updates

RELATED: Is shutting down bars, restaurants the solution to stopping the coronavirus spread?

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