Governor Jay Inslee has partially rolled back some guidance for agritourism within Washington, although statewide restrictions still apply.
Following widespread concern from businesses and the public on guidance earlier in August that specifically described how rules impacted activities such as haunted houses and hayrides this fall, Gov. Inslee has now stated these activities could proceed under certain requirements.
Specifically addressed in the new guidance for Phase 2 & 3 counties are
- Animal viewing
- Hay/wagon/train rides
- Children’s play equipment/games
- Private firepit/bonfires
In the latest statement, Gov. Inslee reiterates that agritourism businesses such a farm, ranch, or other agricultural activity are permitted to operate, provided all requirements are met.
Each business must adopt a written procedure for operations at least as protective as the specific requirements outlined in the new guidance and comply with all employee safety and health requirements.
Agritourism businesses must ensure strict adherence to all measures established by the Governor’s guidance, as well as the Department of L&I, and other rules.
In their guidance, it states that customers are required to use cloth face coverings and practice physical distancting.
Whenever possible, the agritourism activities should be held outdoors or in a covered area with “optimal ventilation”.
For hayrides and similar activities, six feet of distance between each household group is still being enforced, and frequent cleaning is required.
For haunted houses and corn mazes, there will be limited occupancy and staff members are required to ensure distancing.
A clear plastic barrier is required in haunted houses between any actors and customers and staff is not allowed to change costumes or masks in-show to ensure less cross contamination.
No agritourism business may operate until it can meet and maintain all the requirements, including providing materials, schedules and equipment required to comply.