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Gov Cooper: Larger outdoor venues can soon open at 7% capacity

Cooper said if our state's progress holds, larger outdoor event venues will be able to open at 7% capacity starting next Friday, October 2.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — North Carolina's Governor, Roy Cooper, announced Tuesday the next step in the state's phased reopening plan.

Cooper said if our state's progress holds, larger outdoor event venues, with a seating capacity of more than 10,000, will be able to open at 7% capacity starting next Friday, October 2.

"We will continue analyzing our data as we determine how to move forward safely in other areas that may be included in the new order on October 2nd," Cooper announced. "In it, we hope to ease some other restrictions, while keeping in place safety protocols like masks and social distancing." 

State and public health officials will continue watching the key COVID-19 trends over the next week to determine if any further restrictions can be eased when the current Executive Order expires on October 2 at 5 pm.

Following the Governor's announcement, the Carolina Panthers said they will allow some fans at Bank of America Stadium beginning with their next home game on October 4th. 

RELATED: NCDHHS launches app to notify people when they may have been exposed to COVID-19

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services announced Tuesday the launch of a COVID-19 Exposure Notification app called ‘SlowCOVIDNC.'

The app will help North Carolinians slow the spread of the virus by alerting them when they may have been exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19.

It is completely anonymous and does not collect, store or share personal information or location data.

SlowCOVIDNC, which leverages Google and Apple’s Exposure Notification System (ENS), alerts users who have the app if they have been in close contact with an individual who later tests positive for COVID-19.

It is voluntary to download and use and designed to enhance the state’s existing contact tracing efforts. The app completed Beta testing earlier this month and can now be downloaded for free through the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store.

“With SlowCOVIDNC App, North Carolinians have another powerful tool to help slow the spread of COVID-19 right in their pockets. Downloading SlowCOVIDNC is a practical step each of us can take to protect ourselves, our loved ones and our state,” said NCDHHS Secretary Mandy K. Cohen, M.D.