This is what flattening the curve looks like.
Across the Tri-Counties, new coronavirus cases are beginning to level off — with the exception of the Lompoc area, where a federal correctional center has emerged as a rare hot spot.
Case counts and deaths per 100,000 population are low compared to other parts of the country — as with much of California. Social distancing and self-quarantining are working, for now.
But the economic toll has been enormous — local governments will soon feel the pain already felt in the private sector as tax revenues plunge.
Reopening the Central Coast will take a lot of time and it will not be fair.
Offices will be able to reopen quickly with masks and social distancing as the order of the day. There may be new rules for testing workers or taking their temperature before they can enter a facility.
Restaurants and retailers will find it much more difficult.
Workers will have to wear masks and distance themselves, transactions will not be easy and menus, as Gov. Gavin Newsom has said, will likely be disposable.
How and when the region’s hotels reopen and how our tourism sector gets back on track will take time. So will our ability to have large gatherings.
It may be that some form of temperature check will take place at business conferences and other gatherings.
Tri-county colleges and universities will likely reopen in the fall — again with new rules about distancing and more classes being conducted remotely.
Progress is being made in preventing the spread of coronavirus and reports from the medical front are encouraging.
TRI-COUNTY FIRMS FIGHT COVID-19
No fewer than three area tech firms – FLIR, Seek Thermal and Teledyne – are offering thermal sensors that can remotely detect human temperature and flag people with fevers.
That’s an important first step in controlling the spread of COVID-19 and flattening the curve.
Meanwhile, components developed by Interlink Electronics in Camarillo are helping make ventilators run more effectively and in a way that protects health care workers from infection.
Amgen and a research partner are working on treatments for the disease and MannKind is working to adapt is inhalation technology to one or more treatments.
3D printing solutions are popping up at Naval Base Ventura County and elsewhere. Craft distillers are delivering hand sanitizer in bulk to SLO County.
The Central Coast is doing its part to fight COVID-19.
And that’s part of the reason progress is being made.