With a vaccine just around the corner but COVID-19 cases still high, Pennsylvania has decided to close most casino establishments to help curb the spread of the virus which so far has killed over 300,000 Americans. The move does not effect online casinos in the state.
PA casinos affected
PA casinos were ordered closed on December 12th at 12:01 AM ET. The list of establishments includes all 12 major casinos in the state.
- Harrah’s Philadelphia
- Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course
- Lady Luck Nemacolin
- Live! Casino Pittsburgh
- Meadows Casino and Racetrack
- Mohegan Sun Pocono
- Mount Airy Casino Resort
- Parx Casino
- Presque Isle Racetrack and Casino
- Rivers Pittsburgh
- Valley Forge Casino and Resort
- Wind Creek Bethlehem
Under the order, PA casinos could reopen as soon as January 4th, 2021 beginning at 8:00 AM, unless the order is extended. Rivers Casino Philadelphia had already been closed on November 20th due to a city ordinance requiring them to do so.
In a statement released by Gaming Control Board Executive Director Kevin O’Toole, he said the decision came down to to public health, the safety of customers, employees and others.
“The Board is continuously monitoring developments and will update licensees and the public as frequently as possible with any new developments.”
Governor Tom Wolf echoed O’Toole’s thoughts: “We need to slow the spread right now to save lives.”
The casinos had originally closed in March at the start of the pandemic and has been reopen since mid June.
Truck stop terminals also affected
Gaming machines at truck stops are also affected with the closures. A day after PA casinos were ordered closed, video game terminal rooms were also included on the list.
Like the casinos, truck stop machines were also shut down on December 12th at 12:01 AM and can reopen on January 4th at 8:00 AM, should no changes be made.
The shutdown is said to affect 40 truck stop establishments, which are permitted to have up to five machines per location.