Covid-19 Virus

Overview

City of Beaufort officials are monitoring the status of the COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) in the State of South Carolina and in the region. We are following daily guidance from the South Carolina Department of Health & Environmental Control (DHEC), the lead Public Health agency in the state.

On March 13, 2020, the President issued a Proclamation on Declaring a National Emergency concerning the COVID-19 disease outbreak, and Governor McMaster declared a state of emergency in South Carolina.  For a direct list of Executive Orders by Governor Henry McMaster, please visit SC.GOV.

On March 13, 2020, the City of Beaufort issued a Declaration of Medical Emergency Order (PDF).

On March 17, 2020 the Operational Condition 1 (OPCON) (PDF) has been in effect as of 12:00 PM.

On March 25, 2020 the City of Beaufort issued an extension on the Declaration of Medical Emergency Order - Extended (PDF)

The City of Beaufort urges all of our residents and encourages all business to follow the directives of the Governor in trying to prevent the spread of this virus.

We are also urge our residents to be pro-active, so that together we can curtail the spread of this virus. What does does this mean for you?

  • Please stay at home as much as possible. The more interaction you have with others, the more chance that this disease will spread.
  • If you do go out -- for necessities -- practice social distancing. Stay 6 feet away from other people. Bring wipes with you. If you have latex gloves, wear them.

The more EACH of us does our part, the faster we as a community and a nation will get a handle on this virus.

City update March 26
City update March 24
City update March 23
City update March 20

What the city is doing

The City of Beaufort, in coordination with Beaufort County and other municipalities in the county, is taking these measures:

  • All City offices will be closed to the public beginning Monday, March 23. 
  • All meetings, including City Council work sessions and meetings, are canceled.
    • Transactions will be conducted online. Payments can be made online (www.cityofbeaufort.org) or via mail (1911 Boundary St., Beaufort, SC 29902).
    • Some employees will be working in offices; many will be working from home. Phone calls and emails to city offices will be answered during business hours.
  • All public safety personnel will work their normal shifts and schedules.
  • Beaufort City Hall will have drop-off boxes in the lobby for plans and permits to be left.
  • Community Development (Planning Office) has enlarged its online Dropbox to accept larger files.
  • Building, Fire, and Code enforcement activities will continue as normal with social distancing applied to all interactions.
  • All parks in the City will be closed to public events and programming. They will be open for passive recreation, such as walking or jogging. Maintenance services will continue at the parks, with increased cleaning of restrooms.
  • City staffing will be reduced to minimal levels. Non-essential staff will work from home when possible:
    • Buildings Codes
      • Individuals are encouraged to call prior to submitting to discuss scope of work with staff. 
      • Staff will be able to determine if the online submission is applicable. 
      • You can submit to us at permits@cityofbeaufort.org or contact us at 843-525-7049.
    • Municipal Court
      • Court sessions have been cancelled through March 26, 2020. You will receive a summons in the mail at the address we have on file.
      • Courthouse administrative offices are closed until further notice for public access. 
      • However, payment inquiries, filings, or any other requests are encouraged to email courtcontacts@cityofbeaufort.org for service or 843-525-7036 or 843-525-7033.
    • Finance Department:
    • Fire Department
      • Participation by operational personnel in community out-reach and events is suspended. (Blood pressure checks, smoke alarm installations, community forums, etc.)
      • Community CPR classes are suspended.
      • Public visits and tours of the fire stations are suspended.
      • Please do not bring food or provision donations to the fire stations until after the threat of COVID-19 has passed.
      • The administrative office will be operating virtually and via telephone.
      • For non-emergency administrative service from the department please call 843-525-7055 and your needs will be met on a case by case basis.
      • For emergent service continue to call 911.
    • Police Department
      • The Administrative Offices of the Beaufort Police Department are closed until further notice. 
      • This will NOT affect police patrols. 
      • If you require the assistance of an officer, please call the non-emergency dispatch number at 843-524-2777
      • or 911 in an emergency.

The public is urged to call City Hall at 843-525-7070 before coming in for any service.

Latest updates

About the virus

Prevention

There is currently no vaccine to prevent COVID-19. The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus. However, as a reminder, CDC always recommends everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory diseases, including:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Follow CDC’s recommendations for using a facemask.
    • CDC does not recommend that people who are well wear a facemask to protect themselves from respiratory diseases, including COVID-19.
    • Facemasks should be used by people who show symptoms of COVID-19 to help prevent the spread of the disease to  others. The use of facemasks is also crucial for health workers and people who are taking care of someone in close settings (at home or in a health care facility).
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
    • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.

Those with questions about COVID-19 can call the DHEC Care Line at 1-855-472-3432. Staff is answering calls from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. seven days a week.