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Apple closes all California stores as COVID cases rise – SFGate

Dec. 19, 2020Updated: Dec. 19, 2020 6:25 p.m.

Signs are seen on a window to warn consumers that the Apple Store in Santa Monica, California, is closed on July 28, 2020, amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Signs are seen on a window to warn consumers that the Apple Store in Santa Monica, California, is closed on July 28, 2020, amid the coronavirus pandemic.

VALERIE MACON/AFP via Getty Images

As California becomes a new epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic, Apple has temporarily shuttered all 53 of its stores in the state less than a week before Christmas. The period between Thanksgiving and Christmas is traditionally one of the busiest shopping periods of the year.

The move comes a day after the Cupertino-based company closed all of its Los Angeles-area stores. The Southern California region had recently hit 0% ICU bed capacity as the pandemic continues to surge in the area.

Customers can still visit the stores, but only to pickup existing online orders or attend already scheduled tech support appointments and already scheduled shopping sessions made through Tuesday, December 22, store location websites in California say.

There is no word yet on when stores will reopen. However, the state’s Department of Public Health website says that Southern California and San Joaquin regions would be eligible to exit stay-at-home orders on December 28th, but only if ICU bed capacity projections are equal to or above 15% for the following month. The Bay Area could see its shutdown lifted on January 8th.

California has seen 1.8 million cases of COVID-19, with 22,432 deaths, according to the state’s dashboard. Today, the state recorded 43,608 new cases, though that number includes cases prior to yesterday since test results reporting can be delayed.

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