Washington’s new normal: Full capacity, fewer masks

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — Fifteen months after Washington state’s first “stay at home” order was issued in response to the coronavirus, businesses across the state are now allowed to return to pre-pandemic operations. Starting Wednesday, restaurants and bars and other businesses can resume full indoor occupancy levels and physical distancing requirements will be lifted. Previous indoor capacity at businesses was capped at 50%. There will be fewer masking requirements though masking rules will remain in place at health care settings correctional facilities, homeless shelters and schools. Masks will continue to be required for unvaccinated employees who return to work indoors. Businesses can continue to choose to require masks for their customers, regardless of vaccination status.