COVID: As Restrictions Ease Bay Area Health Experts Weigh In On Mask Etiquette

As COVID-19 restrictions ease, Betty Yu tells what medical experts are saying about the new etiquette.

Video Transcript

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- Take a look toward Marin County which could be the first in the Bay Area to move into the yellow tier. So as restrictions are easing and more of us are getting vaccinated, what's the new etiquette? KPIX 5's Betty Yu on what medical experts are saying. Betty.

BETTY YU: Liz, right now Marin County is teetering between the orange and the yellow tier. Tonight, here in Larkspur, the promise of advancing to yellow has many folks wondering if we can relax some safety protocols in social settings as well.

At Marin Brewing Company in Larkspur, just being on the brink of advancing to the least restrictive yellow tier is already boosting people's moods.

CHRISTIAN HANSEN: It's promising news that things are changing in the right direction finally. I think it's hopeful that everything is going to be better for a lot of people. It brings a lot of energy, and I think a lot of people are excited.

BETTY YU: Though the indoor dining capacity will stay at 50% under the yellow tier, bars will be allowed to reopen at 25% capacity indoors.

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At this point, a little more than half of Marin's residents are fully vaccinated.

GEORGE RUTHERFORD: Right now, if you go-- if you have-- if everybody's been vaccinated, then you can just-- you know, you don't need to wear masks in a-- at a-- at a function like, oh, say, a wedding or a reception.

BETTY YU: UCSF epidemiologist Dr. George Rutherford says different rules do apply for large crowds and gatherings, and we should still err on the side of caution.

GEORGE RUTHERFORD: You do need to wear masks. That's a state mandate. That's still the state mandate when you're out and about. And I wear a mask when I go to the grocery store. I'm completely vaccinated. But I think it's the prudent thing to do, and I think it's also part of etiquette to model good behavior.

ANDREA HENKART: People want to be out. They want to go out to eat. They want to go work out. They want to be together. And so being able to do that is-- I just think it's time.

PETER BOWIE: I just love talking to people, you know? I mean, that's just the reality. It's-- it's-- it's been a year of not being able to just kind of come out into the community and share our experiences.

BETTY YU: And Governor Gavin Newsom has said that he plans to do away with the entire tiered system by June 15. Liz.

- All right, Betty, thank you.