Ohio casinos reopen with new coronavirus restrictions

Updated: Jun. 19, 2020 at 6:16 AM EDT
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CINCINNATI (FOX19) - Casinos and racinos can reopen in Ohio starting Friday for the first time since coronavirus closed them three months ago.

Locally, that includes:

  • Hard Rock Casino Cincinnati, formerly JACK Cincinnati Casino, opened at 6 a.m. in downtown Cincinnati
  • Belterra Park Cincinnati in Anderson Township will resume business at 10 a.m

You will notice a number of virus protections and requirements.

For employees, six feet of distance must be maintained and barriers may be used in some situations.

Casinos must establish a maximum capacity of no more than 50% allowed by the fire code.

Also, poker tables and live events or concerts will not be allowed until further notice.

At Hard Rock Casino Cincinnati, here are the requirements:

  • Temperature checks for all guests and team members prior to entry. Any guest or team member with a temperature above CDC guidelines of 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit will not be allowed in.
  • A requirement that all guests wear masks or cloth face coverings that meet CDC guidelines, without exception. Masks will be provided to guests, as needed.
  • Thousands of alternating slot machines will be turned off, to help ensure social distancing on the casino floors.
  • New Plexiglas barriers will divide players at table games, poker games and customer service areas.
  • Hundreds of team members will be part of a new “Safe and Sound Clean Team” to focus on cleaning and disinfecting surfaces throughout the casino complexes, with special emphasis on high-touch surfaces and common areas.
  • Hundreds of signs will be posted throughout the casino complexes to encourage social distancing and help ensure adherence to Safe and Sound Program guidelines.
  • Hand-sanitizing stations will be available on the casino floors, at the entrances and throughout the casino complexes.
  • Constant purification and disinfecting of the air flowing into the complex through bipolar ionization system designed to destroy virus particles in the air and on surfaces.

“We really wanted to ensure that all of our guests have social distancing,” George Goldhoff, President of Hard Rock Casino Cincinnati said. “All of our table games have shields around them with only four players maximum at any point.”

Here are the full statewide recommendations laid out by Gov. Mike DeWine and the Department of Health under the Responsible RestartOhio plan.

Earlier this week, casinos reopened in Indiana including three in our region:

  • Rising Star Casino in Rising Sun
  • Hollywood Casino Lawrenceburg
  • Belterra Casino Resort in Florence, Indiana

More information is on the Indiana Gaming Commission’s website.

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