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COVID: Santa Clara County Inspectors Make Surprise Visits To Outdoor Super Bowl Gatherings

SAN JOSE (CBS SF) -- Santa Clara County inspectors made unannounced visits to restaurants on Sunday trying to prevent any Super Bowl watch parties from turning into super spreader events.

Restaurant managers said the inspectors in plain clothes showed their work badge and asked to do a walk-through of the outdoor setup.

"They wanted to reinforce some of the restrictions, making sure the (COVID safety) postings were correct and accurate and current," said Sonny Walters, owner of The Brit.

Walters said two enforcement inspectors with the Santa Clara County Business Compliance unit issued the Britt a few correctable warnings and gave the sports bar 48 hours to fix those problems.

"In general, they've been pretty helpful with giving us the direction and the tools to operate," said Walters.

Inspectors wanted The Brit and other restaurants to make sure customers wear masks when not eating, even if seated at their table.

"You can't enforce that," said Rudy DeAnda, a customer who was at The Brit and saw the inspection. "First of all, they're here to have a good time. They're here to enjoy the little freedom that they have. And to sit at a table that you're with people that you know, I think you should be able to take them off. And I feel like they're enforcing too many rules now."

Many customers at San Pedro Square restaurants in San Jose ignored that rule and even talked to football fans from other tables. Restaurant manager and workers could be seen asking customers to mask up after eating. The restaurants were busy, but not crowded.

"Today is really not a money-making type of day," said Randy Musterer, owner of Sushi Confidential. "We can't pack the patio like we normally would. We're just giving our customers a chance to come out and enjoy some football, keep people out of inside homes, out of those house parties, and give them a safe place to watch the game."

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