Florida broke its one-day record for new coronavirus cases, nearly tying New York State’s maximum daily count set in April.
Florida on Saturday reported 11,458 new cases of the virus, which breaks its previous records and is approaching New York’s largest daily record of 11,571 in April, according to NBC Miami and the New York State Department of Health.
New York’s peak was the highest one-day figure in the nation so far, according to Marketwatch.
In Florida, almost all new cases, 11,445, were among state residents.
The state is among the 11 where the numbers have skyrocketed, at least doubling in the past two weeks. The other states, primarily in the south and west, are: Arizona, Georgia, Idaho, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Montana, Nevada, South Carolina, and Texas, according to an analysis by NBC News.
Meanwhile, the United States as a whole reported 53,213 new cases, its second consecutive day with a count of over 50,000, according to the World Health Organization. The country has more than 2.7 million confirmed cases of coronavirus and 128,481 deaths, reports the WHO.
In Florida, Miami-Dade County’s efforts to curb the spread of the virus include a new curfew from 10 pm to 6 am that began Friday night. County Mayor Carlos A. Giménez also said he was delaying the reopening of entertainment venues, including movie theaters, bowling alleys and casinos under county control. The county previously closed its beaches for the Independence Day holiday weekend.
Meanwhile, the state’s governor, Ron DeSantis, a Republican, is encouraging people in the state to wear face covers, but has not made it a requirement.
DeSantis communications director Helen Aguirre Ferre said in an email that the growth in cases in the state was due in part to Florida also setting a new record in the number of tests conducted: 85,086. The percentage of those who received positive results remained constant at 14 percent, he said.
The governor’s office noted that most Floridians already live under a mask mandate, as populous counties such as Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach, Duval and Hillsborough counties have already adopted such requirements.
“Governor DeSantis continues to emphasize the importance of personal responsibility in helping to defeat COVID,” Ferre said in the email. “Florida has released public service announcements, in both English and Spanish, emphasizing the importance of wearing a face covering and avoiding the ‘3 c’s: crowded spaces, closed spaces, and close contact spaces.”
A group of 10 Democratic lawmakers urged DeSantis on Friday to order the use of masks for all of Florida, according to NBC Miami.
“In looking at the devastation COVID-19 is causing in our communities, we strongly recommend that the State of Florida implement a mandatory use of covering your face over your nose and mouth while in a business or other building open to the public, as well as public spaces in the open air, whenever social distancing is not possible, “the legislators wrote to the governor, the Orlando Sentinel reported.