LA County Puts in Place New Pandemic Order; Restricts Use of Outdoor Pools

In an effort to reduce the risk of transmission of the novel coronavirus, the County of Los Angeles put into effect new safety measures on Monday. The order is the strictest in the state and affects 10 million residents. The State of California established a stay-home order from November 21 through December 21 –asking residents to stay home between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m.– but the LA County measure goes beyond the state’s mandate.

LA County, which has seen an alarming rise in cases in recent weeks, accounts for more than 400,000 of California’s 1.23 million confirmed COVID-19 cases to date. Director of Public Health Barbara Ferrer said, “We are at the most difficult moment time in the pandemic. The alarming increases in cases that we continue to witness is not due to random events out of our control – many of these cases could have been prevented if individuals and businesses were following the straightforward public health measures of masking, distancing and infection control.”

LA County is vast. Most of its swimming pools are outdoors, and each facility has been dealing with the pandemic according to its own rules, following the guidelines of local health authorities. This means that some pools have closed and opened again; others never reopened after the first shutdown in March. The new order stipulates that outdoor pools that serve more than one household be limited to lap swimming with one person per lane until December 20.

There are no Southern California Swimming LSC-sanctioned meets for the month of December this year. Some LA County teams had taken the month off altogether; others were focused on training.

Orange County has not added restrictions to the state mandate and its teams have not seen a disruption to their schedules, as of yet.

LA County Safety Measures, November 30-December 20:

Effective today, Monday, November 30, additional safety measures go into effect that aim to reduce the risk of transmission in the following several ways:

  • Requesting that individuals remain in their homes and with their immediate households as much as possible and reduce mingling with others not in your household.
  • Requiring that everyone wear a face covering whenever they are engaging in activities outside their homes where they are or can be in contact with others not in their household; this includes at gyms, at parks, at beaches. Unless swimming, please keep your face covering on over your nose and mouth.
  • And reducing capacity at sites where non-household members mingle to avoid crowding.

The additional safety modifications in the Order will remain in effect for three weeks until December 20 and include the following changes:

  • Gatherings: All public and private gatherings with individuals not in your household are prohibited, except for faith based services and protests, which are constitutionally protected rights.
  • Occupancy limits at various businesses; all individuals at these sites are required to wear face coverings and keep at least 6 feet of distance:
    • Essential retail – 35% maximum occupancy
    • Non-essential retail (includes indoor malls) – 20% maximum occupancy
    • Personal care services – 20% maximum occupancy
    • Libraries – 20% maximum occupancy
    • Fitness centers operating outdoors – 50% maximum occupancy
    • Museums galleries, zoos, aquariums, botanical gardens operating outdoors – 50% maximum occupancy
    • Mini-golf, batting cages, go-kart racing operating outdoors – 50% maximum occupancy
  • Outdoor recreation activities all which require face coverings (except for swimming) and distancing:
    • Beaches, trails, and parks remain open; gatherings at these sites with members outside your household are prohibited.
    • Golf courses, tennis courts, pickleball, archery ranges, skate parks, bike parks, and community gardens remain open for individuals or members of a single household. Pools that serve more than one household may open only for regulated lap swimming with one person per lane.
    • Drive-in movies/events/car parades are permitted provided occupants in each car are members of one household.
  • Schools:
    • All schools and day camps remain open adhering to re-opening protocols. K-12 Schools and Day Camps with an outbreak (3 cases or more over 14 days) should close for 14 days.
  • Closed non-essential businesses/activities:
    • Playgrounds (with the exception of playgrounds at childcare and schools)
    • Cardrooms


Leave a Reply

Notify of
newest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
1 month ago

Oof. “15 days to flatten the curve”

Reply to  swimgeek
1 month ago


Last edited 1 month ago by DBswims
1 month ago

How does this affect the USC college swimming team?

Stan Crump
Reply to  Samuella
1 month ago

The guess here is that Coach will write workouts for the kids, and they will go do them at lap swim. Maybe.

1 month ago

Ridiculous. Apparently you get covid from 10 pm to 5 am- Of course LA County has huge Covid numbers,homelessness can’t quarantine! The huge homeless population is just going to grow larger and us already Out of control! Government in LA County has no idea how to take care of their state that’s why it’s such a train wreck. It’s so sad to think that this generation of children are missing out on so much of their youth Because the people in control in the government in California are not taking care of their people properly. Such a mess and just getting worse by cutting jobs and making businesses close. So sad for all these kids and all these business owners… Read more »

Swim&Polo Dad
Reply to  Crazyaboutswim
1 month ago

Loved the county supervisor voting to close restaurants, saying how dangerous they are. Then she goes out to eat in Santa Monica. You can’t make this stuff up.

Reply to  Swim&Polo Dad
1 month ago

I truly believe, after hearing things like this, that the guilty party needs to be removed immediately. But, no, instead a public statement of apology will do in this public mockery clown show.

Swim&Polo Dad
Reply to  RidiculousObserver
1 month ago

Actually, she didn’t apologize. She claimed that she wanted go to her favorite restaurant one last time as a show of support before her vote closed it. A real show of support would have been to find a way to keep it open. What garbage.

Reply to  Crazyaboutswim
1 month ago

Well said. The mucous coated, bacteria covered face diaper wearing government idiots who only wear their shields when cameras are rolling do not have merit or enforcement ability to herd the citizens of LA, California and USA proper into oblivion. Common sense will win the day…eventually.

Will 37
Reply to  SwimFani
1 month ago

You made exactly the point. Your face diaper is meant to cover your disgu**ting mucous spreading into the air. Whether common sense will win or not, I am not sure, but the creatures who are low in cognitive ability certainly will not.

About Anne Lepesant

Anne Lepesant

Anne Lepesant is the mother of four daughters, all of whom swim/swam in college. With an undergraduate degree from Princeton (where she was an all-Ivy tennis player) and an MBA from INSEAD, she worked for many years in the financial industry, both in France and the U.S. Anne is currently …

Read More »