Ontario is pulling its emergency brake and putting the province into at least a 4-week long shutdown beginning Saturday.

Premier Doug Ford announced the move this afternoon resulting from a surge in COVID-19 cases and intensive care admissions across the province.

Under the shutdown restaurants will be closed to in-person dining but allowed to open for takeout and delivery.

Gyms and personal care services will be closed.

Big box stores are limited to 25 per cent capacity and while businesses like grocery stores are limited to 50 per cent capacity.

Residents are not allowed to get together inside with anyone outside of their own home.

Outside gatherings are capped at five people while schools will stay open with COVID-19 safety protocols in place.

Indoor and outdoor sports and recreation facilities will be closed with very limited exceptions.

Ontarian’s are also being asked to limit trips outside the home to necessities and employers are being requested to make every effort to allow employees to work from home.

Schools will remain open for in-person learning while spring break will still go ahead the week of April 12th.

Ford says the province is facing a “very serious” situation and this is “a new pandemic” because of variants.