News to Know for Dec. 11: New COVID-19 restrictions; VHSL requires mask-wearing; Vaccine update; No flu activity in Va.

News to Know for Dec. 11: New COVID-19 restrictions; VHSL requires mask-wearing; Vaccine update; No flu activity in Va.
(Source: Office of the Governor)

RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - Here’s a glimpse at our top headlines to get you out the door.

Warm Winter Weekend Ahead

Mainly dry and warm weather for the next few days with plenty of sun.

Today will be mostly sunny and warmer. Highs in the low 60s.

A Warm Winter Weekend with highs in the 60s

Tractor-Trailers Collide

Officials say two tractor-trailers collided and spilled their loads onto I-295 North in Prince George County.

One truck was carrying sugar, the second truck was carrying insulation.

Tractor trailer crash on I-295 in Prince George.
Tractor trailer crash on I-295 in Prince George. (Source: NBC12)

No injuries were reported and both trucks did not overturn.

Northbound lanes were closed for hours while crews cleaned up the roads.

Gov. Northam Issues More Restrictions

Virginia Governor Ralph Northam announced increased measures Thursday in the fight against coronavirus throughout the commonwealth, including a nightly curfew.

Starting Monday, Dec. 14, Northam’s modified “stay-at-home” order will include a curfew from midnight to 5 a.m.

Gov. Ralph Northam holding a press briefing in Richmond.
Gov. Ralph Northam holding a press briefing in Richmond. (Source: VPM)

Essential travel, obtaining food and goods, traveling to and from work, and seeking medical attention, will still be allowed during this time.

The governor was asked multiple times if this would be enforced, he said Virginians are “asked” to stay at home.

VEA Wants Schools To Go Virtual

The Virginia Education Association (VEA) is now calling for schools across the state to move to all-virtual instruction through at least mid-January.

Dr. Fedderman says he’s especially concerned that the holiday season could likely bring another huge spike in cases.

Chesterfield Police On Curfew

Following Governor Northam’s curfew announcement, Chesterfield police are telling drivers they will not get pulled over simply for driving after midnight.

Police Chief Colonel Jeffrey Katz says his officers will not be stopping people who are ‘otherwise lawfully operating a motor vehicle’ from 12 a.m. to 5 a.m.

“There are completely lawful reasons for people to be out and about during these times and therefore the mere operation of a motor vehicle does not remotely meet the legal burden necessary to justify a lawful stop,” Colonel Katz said in a statement on Facebook.

Kirk Cox’s Announcement

Republican candidate for governor Kirk Cox has unveiled his first formal proposal on Thursday.

If elected, he’s planning a $50 million initiative to help law enforcement.

House Speaker Kirk Cox, R-Colonial Heights, and Senate Majority Leader Tommy Norment, R-James City, talk to reporters following the abrupt adjournment of the special session called by the governor on gun violence.
House Speaker Kirk Cox, R-Colonial Heights, and Senate Majority Leader Tommy Norment, R-James City, talk to reporters following the abrupt adjournment of the special session called by the governor on gun violence. (Source: Ned Oliver/ Virginia Mercury)

Cox says he wants to raise the salary for state troopers and sheriff’s deputies.

VHSL Mask-Wearing

The Virginia High School League will require most sports to follow Virginia Department of Health recommendations advising student-athletes to wear masks at all times, including during practices and competitions, the league announced on Thursday night.

The VHSL also advised student-athletes not to participate if wearing a mask makes the sport difficult.

School systems that have chosen to participate in winter sports began basketball and cheerleading practices this past Monday.

Other winter sports begin practices this coming Monday. Basketball games can begin on Dec. 21.

Vaccine Approved: Here’s What’s Next

Shots could begin within days, depending on how quickly the Food and Drug Administration signs off, as expected, on the expert committee’s recommendation.

Pfizer has said it will have about 25 million doses of the two-shot vaccine for the U.S. by the end of December.

But the initial supplies will be reserved primarily for health care workers and nursing home residents, with other vulnerable groups next in line until ramped-up production enables shots to become widely available on-demand, something that will probably not happen until the spring.

Amanda Chase Seeks Republican Nomination

Chase also said that the governor’s restrictions wouldn’t help Virginians and that wearing a mask should be your choice.

Amanda Chase
Amanda Chase (Source: NBC12)

No Flu In Virginia

The department of health says over the last week, Virginia was at the ‘no activity’ level of flu cases.

Some health districts have not seen a single case of the flu this season.

Doctors say this can be attributed to mask-wearing, social distancing and other COVID-19 measures in place.

Final Thought

Lead from the heart, not the head - Princess Diana

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