coronavirus

National Harbor Hotels Shut Down Over COVID-19 Restrictions

The closures came after Prince George's County officials addressed the problem of teens partying in National Harbor hotels on the weekends

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The Prince George's County Health Department confirmed it shut down two National Habor hotels after incidents in which the country's coronavirus restrictions were violated.

Both hotels were allowed to reopen around noon on Saturday.

The closures came about a month after Prince George's County police were seen outside the Hampton Inn and Suites at National Harbor breaking up a party attended by teenagers.

That hotel and the AC Hotel National Harbor were both ordered to shutter "to protect health and safety," according to notices posted at each business.

The health department notices say the hotels are "unsafe" facilities and the closures are "necessary" to contain coronavirus. The notices didn't give details about specific infractions.

A sign was first noticed outside the Hampton Inn and Suites at National Harbor, NBC Washington news partner WTOP reported.

A sign posted on the door of the Hampton Inn and Suites in National Harbor says it is closed to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

The Hampton Inn and Suites violated the county's coronavirus restrictions by allowing large parties and not providing adequate security, the Prince George's County Health Department said.

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The county has done about 7,400 inspections and closed 10 businesses for violating rules since July. Four of those businesses have reopened.

Before reopening, businesses closed for violating the rules must present a compliance plan. Both hotels presented plans, which were under review.

After four weeks of increases in the coronavirus case numbers, Prince George’s County Executive Angela Alsobrooks is restricting capacity at many businesses and requiring masks to be worn outdoors. Tracee Wilkins reports.

The Hampton Inn and Suites and the AC Hotel by Marriot are located on Waterfront Street.

In general, hotels are considered an essential business by the state of Maryland and are allowed to stay open during the pandemic.

However, local jurisdictions have been granted the power to enforce social distancing rules, such as capacity limits.

County Executive Angela Alsobrooks on Thursday said the onus of enforcing social distancing orders can fall to businesses and that consequences will be levied against businesses that allow people to flout the rules.

Prince George's County is not ready to move on the phase three of reopening. Aimee Cho reports on some of the county's concerns.

Alsobrooks has been pleading with parents to stop dropping their kids off to hang out at National Harbor. On Thursday, she said that unattended minors were causing disruptions for businesses and residents.

She also addressed this issue last month, saying they have an ongoing problem of teens gathering in National Harbor hotel rooms to party on weekends.

“There have been increased thefts, hotel parties hosted by parents for underage children who they leave in those hotel rooms,” Alsobrooks said last month.

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