Gov. Cooper issues statewide stay-at-home order as NC’s coronavirus numbers climb


RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper issued a statewide stay-at-home order during a news conference Friday. The order will take effect at 5 p.m. Monday as the state continues to see its coronavirus cases increase.

Cooper also said North Carolina has 763 COVID-19 cases in 60 counties. As of Friday night, four people have died because of the virus — one person each in Johnston, Harnett, Cabarrus and Rowan counties.

The order directs people to stay home unless they need to leave for essentials like work, food, medicine, outdoor exercise, or to help someone. It also bans gatherings of more than 10 people and directs people to stay 6 feet apart, Cooper said.


Many counties in the state had stay-at-home orders active. Mecklenburg County’s began Thursday at 8 a.m. Wake County’s began at 5 p.m. Friday and Orange’s followed an hour later.

Mecklenburg County leads the state with at least 218 cases of COVID-19. Wake County has at least 105 and Durham County has at least 103.

Wake County’s 1.1 million residents will be under a stay-at-home order starting late Friday afternoon, as will people in Orange County. Cooper has closed schools through mid-May and certain businesses.


COVID-19 timeline

  • March 3: NCDHHS announces state’s first COVID-19 case
  • March 10: Gov. Roy Cooper declares State of Emergency
  • March 11: World Health Organization declares COVID-19 a pandemic
  • March 13: President Donald Trump declares a National Emergency
  • March 14: Cooper issues Executive Order 117 closing K-12 public schools until at least March 30 and banning gatherings of more than 100 people
  • March 16: NCDHHS recommends no mass gatherings for more than 50 people
  • March 17: Cooper issues Executive Order 118 limiting operations of restaurants and bars, and broadening unemployment insurance benefits
  • March 23: Cooper issues Executive Order 120 which closes public K-12 schools through May 15 and orders businesses such as barbershops and salons to close.
  • March 25: North Carolina reports its first coronavirus-related deaths
  • March 29: Trump extends social distancing orders through the end of April
  • March 31: Cooper signs Executive Order 124 which prohibits utilities from disconnecting people who are unable to pay during the pandemic.
  • April 7: Cooper will sign executive orders limiting customers in retailers and offers child care assistance to certain workers
  • April 14: Coronavirus-related deaths top 100 in North Carolina
  • April 24: Cooper extends stay-at-home order to May 8
  • May 5: Cooper announces Phase One of reopening will being May 8

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