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CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8 | cbs8.com

San Diego County allow golf courses to open for play with new safety plans

County courses that meet the county's social distancing protocol and specific requirements for golf courses open for limited use.

SAN DIEGO COUNTY, Calif. — The news that golfers across the county had been waiting for officially came during the San Diego County's coronavirus update on Thursday afternoon. 

During the briefing, Dr. Wilma Wooten, Supervisor Nathan Fletcher, and Chairman Greg Cox announced that golf courses can reopen on May 1 for limited use if they have an approved safety and physical distancing plan approved by the county.

In addition to making sure that all of the measures of the county's social distancing and sanitation protocol is in place, each golf course must meet all requirements of the golf course physical distancing and safety plan.  The checklist covers items to protect the staff and golfers during play and also measures to protect the golfers after completion of play. 

RELATED: San Diego County eases some restrictions on golf courses, boats, and parks

Measures to protect golf staff and golfers

Staff and golfers must follow social distancing guidelines and remain at a distance of 6 feet. No physical touching is allowed. All employees must follow their specific city's requirements for face coverings. Staff must check the temperature of each guest upon entry to the facility.

Measures to protect golfer health off the course

Golfers should not come to the course if they are feeling sick. Hand sanitizer will be available through the facilities. All golfers shall walk the course, golf carts are only allowed for those over 55 years of age or people of any age with disabilities that would prevent them from walking the course. Golfers must handle their own bags and equipment. Rental clubs and equipment will not be available. Cash will not be accepted, credit cards or charge account payments will only be allowed.

Measures to protect golfer health on the course

Tee times will have a maximum of four players.  All golfers must maintain at least a six-foot distance during the round. All sand trap rakes, golf ball washers, and water dispensers that require contact will be removed from the course. Flagsticks must remain in the cups at all times and all cups will be adjusted so the ball can be retrieved without touching anything but the ball. Bathrooms on the course can remain open provided they meet the protocols set by the CDC.

Editors note: County officials provided additional clarity on May 5 regarding golf cart usage which has been added to this story.

See the entire Golf Course Physical Distancing and Safety Plan checklist here: 

RELATED: San Diego begins limited reopening of city parks following COVID-19 closures