Novel coronavirus cases in the US have surpassed 11 million milestones, Monday, as new cases keep sprouting on record numbers across the nation forcing states to take aggressive measures to contain the spread.
Michigan and Washington joined a flurry of other US states to impose newer curbs to prevent a boom in the number of infections. Schools and colleges have been asked to suspend on-site teaching, while restaurants are being prohibited from serving indoors, multiple media reported.
“This spike puts us in a more dangerous position as we were in March,” Washington Gov. Jay Inslee said during a press conference Sunday.
“And it means, unfortunately, the time has come to reinstate restrictions on activities statewide to preserve the public’s well-being and to save lives,” he added.
“These were very difficult decisions that have very real consequences on people’s livelihoods. I recognize that and don’t take those impacts lightly, but we must act now and act quickly to slow the spread of this disease.”
Curbs to control the raging pandemic
Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced Sunday night the state is responding to a surge in COVID-19 cases by imposing a shutdown of indoor gatherings in both public and business settings.
The emergency order is issued by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services and was outlined by MDHHS Director Robert Gordon. The order begins Wednesday at 12:01 a.m. and will last three weeks.
Indoor gatherings will be limited to 10 people from no more than two households and allowed only at non-residential venues. Outdoor gatherings are limited to 25 people from no more than three households.
Funerals may be conducted, but must be limited to 25 people. Organized sports may be conducted, but only without spectators and under the compliance of the MDHHS enhanced testing regimen.
Among the businesses affected are indoor service at bars and restaurants; indoor entertainment venues such as casinos, bowling centers, movie theaters, and ice rinks; and group exercise classes.
Only distance learning will be allowed for high school classes during the three-week shutdown. Facemasks are required at all gatherings as well as the collection of contact tracing information.
Meanwhile, at an impromptu Sunday news conference, Washington Gov. Jay Inslee announced the state will be entering a month-long lockdown, The Center Square reported.
Under the order, restaurants and bars statewide are closed until further notice and limited to take-out only. Gyms, bowling alleys, theaters, museums, and zoos are also closed per Inslee’s restrictions.
Wedding and funeral ceremonies are limited to 30 people while religious services are capped at 25% indoor occupancy or 200 people, whichever is fewer, and no choirs or bands.
12th day of over 100,000 cases in a row
California and Texas, meanwhile, became the two states in the US to cross the 1 million marks, while Oregon and New Mexico announced tighter restrictions to stem the spread.
The last million cases were added in less than a week — an eye-opening development that proves with each passing day, the threshold of new cases, and the time it takes to pile up, are shortening.
For the 12th day straight — starting from November 4th to November 15th — the US recorded over 100,000 new cases, the COVID Tracking Project says.
In the last 24-hours, 139k new cases, and 583 deaths were noted, after 1.5M tests were conducted. On average, 1000 people are passing away after succumbing to the virus, the BBC noted. Total deaths stand at 250,000.
The pileup of cases in extraordinary numbers is putting renewed pressure on incumbent President Donald Trump, who is yet to concede the 2020 US Election results.
Trump, who faces severe criticism for his botched response to the pandemic said Friday that he hopes to deliver 20 million approved vaccines starting December, while no vaccine has been approved yet.
President-elect Joe Biden, along with some other senior Republican-leaders and public health experts has increased their pressure o Trump to concede, whose refusal has put Biden’s transition to power on hold.
President Trump claims to have won the 2020 US Elections which Joe Biden has emerged as a projected winner after achieving over 150 Electoral College votes.
In a late-night Tweet on Sunday, President Trump wrote: “I WON THE ELECTION!” Twitter as usual affized a warning that read “Official sources called this election differently.”
The rising coronavirus cases in the US are currently attributed to an aggressive ‘community spread’ where the virus becomes so widespread that the source of the infections or the person who is spreading cannot be traced, Johns Hopinks University data showed.
COVID-19 mainly spreads via respiratory droplets that are released during a sick person sneezes, coughs, or talks, among other ways of expulsion from mouth and nose.