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Royal Oak Emagine movie theater to stay open as coronavirus spreads

ROYAL OAK, Mich. – Health officials confirmed there are 25 cases of coronavirus in Michigan.

On Thursday night Michigan Gov. Whitmer announced the closure of all K-12 schools across the state through April 5.

READ: Michigan governor orders temporary ban on all events with over 250 people

Because schools are closed, movie theaters could be a popular destination the next few weeks. Local 4′s Victor Williams went to the Royal Oak Emagine to see what precautions the movie theater chain is taking to keep everyone safe.

  • Watch Victor Williams’ report above.

With coronavirus confirmed in Michigan major events have been cancelled -- but the owner of a popular movie theater franchise wants people to know they can still enjoy the simplicities of seeing films on the big screen.

Looking around Emagine Theater it might appear to be another day at the movies but from now on customers will notice several cleaners working around the clock to make sure everything is sanitized.

All the seats are being wiped down with an EPA-approved disinfectant, said Emagine CEO Anthony Laverde.

Laverde insists that all locations will be following World Health Organization and Centers for Disease Control guidelines.

“Going to the movies is a period of escapism. We hope folks get a few hours away from the noise and the stress of what the coronavirus is creating and hopefully Emagine can be a part of that,” Laverde said.

You can expect to see half the amount of movie goers usually allowed in a theater at a time.

“In response to the governor’s request last evening, we’ve reduced the capacity of all of our venues by 50 percent and allowing a max of 100 guests per showing,” he said. “It’s obviously the consumers’ choice. We are open and we welcome them. If they choose not to come here, then we will be here waiting for them when the virus passes.”

The precautions will be in place at all Emagine locations until further notice.

Click here to read more about coronavirus event changes

How COVID-19 Spreads

Person-to-person spread

The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person.

  • Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
  • Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.

These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.

Can someone spread the virus without being sick?

  • People are thought to be most contagious when they are most symptomatic (the sickest).
  • Some spread might be possible before people show symptoms; there have been reports of this occurring with this new coronavirus, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.

Spread from contact with contaminated surfaces or objects

It may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.

How easily the virus spreads

How easily a virus spreads from person-to-person can vary. Some viruses are highly contagious (spread easily), like measles, while other viruses do not spread as easily. Another factor is whether the spread is sustained, spreading continually without stopping.

Prevention & Treatment

There is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease 2019 (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.

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.

People who think they may have been exposed to COVID-19 should contact their healthcare provider immediately.

Question about coronavirus? Ask Dr. McGeorge here.

Read more about coronavirus here.


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