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Severe weather outlook South Dakota

16 counties to change to orange, or high, risk level on Friday


As COVID-19 cases in the state continue to rise, Gov. Doug Burgum at his Wednesday press briefing announced the change of 16 counties’ risk levels to orange, or high risk level.

The risk level changes to orange for the following counties on Friday, Oct. 16 at 5 p.m.:

  • Bottineau
  • Williams
  • Mountrail
  • McHenry
  • McKenzie
  • Dunn
  • McLean
  • Benson
  • Golden Valley
  • Stark
  • Morton
  • Burleigh
  • Cass
  • Sioux
  • Emmons
  • Dickey

Also effective Friday, the updated ND Smart Restart guidelines are as follows for counties under these risk designations:

  • Critical (red): Non-essential businesses closed
  • High (orange): 25% occupancy with a cap of 50 people (changed from non-essential businesses closed); encourage businesses to require face coverings
  • Moderate (yellow): 50% occupancy with a cap of 100 people (down from 250); encourage businesses to require face coverings
  • Low (green): 75% occupancy with a cap of 200 people (down from 500)
  • New Normal (blue): operate as usual.

Nine counties will move from low risk to moderate risk, and two are moving from the new normal to low risk, which you can see in the map above.

The changes to county risk levels are specific to large gatherings and businesses, not the instructional model within K-12 schools, Burgum said.

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