Thu | Aug 13, 2020

Florida has record number of new virus cases

Published:Saturday | July 4, 2020 | 2:03 PM
A sign is posted at a closed entrance to the beach during the new coronavirus pandemic, Friday, July 3, 2020, in the South Beach neighbourhood of Miami Beach, Florida. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)

ST PETERSBURG, Florida — The Fourth of July holiday weekend began Saturday with some sobering numbers in the Sunshine State: Florida logged a record number of people testing positive for the coronavirus.

State health officials reported 11,445 new cases, a single-day record since the pandemic began earlier this year.

The latest count brings the total number of cases in the state to more than 190,000.

A website maintained by the Department of Health shows an additional 245 hospitalisations from the outbreak.

Local officials and health experts are worried that people will gather over the holiday weekend and spread the virus through close contact.

They’ve tried to mitigate spread by shutting bars statewide.

Some regional attractions, such as Zoo Miami and Jungle Island, have closed. Universal Studios in Orlando is open.

Mayor Carlos Gimenez closed Miami-Dade County beaches through the weekend.

Municipalities elsewhere in South Florida, from Vero Beach to Broward County, did the same.

Beaches in the Florida Keys are also closed. Public beaches along Pinellas County’s 35 miles of sand are open.

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