New US coronavirus cases hit 45,242 for biggest one-day increase of pandemic
LUBBOCK, Texas: The United States recorded 45,242 new cases of COVID-19 on Friday, the largest single-day increase of the pandemic, according to a Reuters tally, bringing the total number of Americans who have tested positive to at least 2.48 million.
The new record for positive COVID-19 tests comes as several states at the center of a new surge in infections took steps back from efforts to ease restrictions on businesses. COVID-19 is the respiratory illness caused by the coronavirus.
Governor Greg Abbott ordered bars across Texas to close by mid-day and required restaurants to limit indoor seating capacity to 50%, while Florida state officials told bars to immediately stop serving alcohol on their premises.
Abbot’s announcement stunned Texas bar owners, who said the governor, a Republican in his second term, had given them little notice. Mark Martinez, owner of a Lubbock beer garden, learned only when friends texted him the news at around 8 a.m.
“I spent thousands of dollars in inventory getting ready for this weekend. I could have really used that (money) for my rent, which is due next week,” said Martinez, 44.
“We were just getting to where we could pay the bills,” said Tish Keller, owner of the Triple J Chophouse and Brew Co. in downtown Lubbock. “Taking us back down to 50% capacity means we won’t have enough business to pay staff, let alone the bills.”
Keller said she didn’t know how long she could stay open and dreaded trying to save her business from ruin twice in one year.
CASES SURGE IN FLORIDA
Florida issued its new rules after recording a startling 8,942 new cases of COVID-19, eclipsing the state’s one-day record of 5,511 reached on June 24.
California Governor Gavin Newsom said Friday that Imperial County, southeast of Los Angeles, has become so overwhelmed by the virus that he was recommending it issue a strict new stay-at-home order. - Reuters