The current spike in virus cases prompted San Francisco officials to call off the New Year’s Eve fireworks show, KRON4 reported.
Local leaders announced the event’s cancellation on Tuesday.
Mayor London Breed and City public safety heads came up with the decision following thorough monitoring of local health signs and the effect on the public safety staffing levels.
In San Francisco, 84 percent of those qualified for vaccines have received their shot and 55 percent got their booster dose.
City leaders, however, cite the risk still brought by the Omicron variant spread.
“While we are all understandably eager to ring in a new year with San Francisco’s customary New Year’s Eve fireworks show, we must remain vigilant in doing all we can to stop the spread of the COVID-19 Omicron variant,” the mayor said.
“Thanks to our employee vaccine mandate, our public safety workers are well-protected against COVID, but they still must take all precautions to help limit the spread. By canceling the New Year’s Eve fireworks show we are reducing everyone’s exposure to COVID-19 while ensuring continuity of citywide public safety operations,” she furthered.
San Francisco officials assure that it continues to prioritize safety measures for its residents and essential workers in the face of the Omicron variant threat.
The city said restricting crowding, such as the planned New Year’s fireworks, will lessen the risk of infection and will add to the protection of its first responders.
San Francisco’s safety agencies’ workforce is strained by the pandemic, specifically due to quarantine and isolation guidelines.
“The newest variant is here and spreading fast. It is impacting everyone in the community, including our public safety staff,” Department of Emergency Management Executive Director Mary Ellen Carroll said.
“The health and safety of our first responders, front-line workers, and community is our top priority. Canceling this New Year’s Eve fireworks show not only reduces the risk of Omicron exposure, but also minimizes impacts on critical safety systems like 9-1-1, allowing dispatchers to remain available to those in most critical need.”
Chief of Police Bill Scott, meanwhile, said: “San Francisco is taking yet another smart, prudent and necessary step to protect one another from the spread of COVID-19 — this time, from a highly contagious Omicron variant — by canceling New Year’s Eve fireworks,” said Chief of Police Bill Scott.
“Minimizing needless exposures among our officers and professional staff is key to maintaining the police staffing levels San Franciscans expect of us, and it’s important that we all do our part as San Franciscans to help reduce community transmission citywide.”