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Why did I just get a stay-at-home alert on my phone?

Cell phone Covid-19 Public Safety Alert - Public Health Emergency Alert - Stay-At-Home-Order
Cell phone Covid-19 Public Safety Alert - Public Health Emergency Alert - Stay-At-Home-Order (Jeffrey F. Bill)

Millions of Marylanders received an emergency alert on their cellphones from the state Monday, urging them to abide by Gov. Larry Hogan’s stay-at-home order to contain the spread of the coronavirus.

The order, which requires all residents to remain inside their homes except for essential activities, goes into effect at 8 p.m. Monday. Noncompliance with the order is a misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in prison and a fine up to $5,000, the governor said.

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While residents are asked to stay inside as much as possible, the order allows to leave their houses for several reasons, including for exercise and to buy groceries and medications.

The stay-at-home order was the Hogan administration’s first time using the statewide emergency cellphone alert system, spokesman Mike Ricci said.

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The number of confirmed coronavirus cases rose by 14% as of Monday, following outbreaks over the weekend at a Carroll County nursing home and a Howard County psychiatric hospital, state officials said.

The number of COVID-19 deaths in Maryland remained at 15 Monday morning, after rising from 10 Saturday, officials said. The number of confirmed cases in the state was 1,413, as of Monday.

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