People are seen at Lauderdale by the Sea, Florida, July 3, 2020.
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Florida and Texas both recorded daily records for new coronavirus cases on Saturday as outbreaks in the South continue to spiral.
Florida reported 11,458 new coronavirus cases on Saturday, bringing the state’s total to 190,052.
Texas reported 8,258 new cases, which brings the state’s total to 191,790.
In Texas, it’s now required by a statewide order to wear face masks in public spaces, and in Florida, face mask mandates and other public health orders are left to the discretion of local governments.
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On Independence Day in the US, both Florida and Texas reported single-day records for new coronavirus cases.
Florida on Saturday reported 11,458 new cases, bringing the state’s total coronavirus cases to 190,052, according to NBC Miami. The Florida Department of Health reported that 11,445 of the new cases recorded from Thursday through Saturday were among Florida residents.
Florida’s daily case count record is just under what New York state’s highest daily total of new coronavirus cases was in April, when the Empire state reported 11,571 new cases in one day.
Florida also reported two new COVID-19-related deaths on Saturday, bringing the state’s death total to 3,731, according to data from the Florida Department of Health.
Texas saw 8,258 new cases on Saturday, bringing the state’s total COVID-19 cases to 191,790, according to data from the Texas Department of State Health Services. Texas reported 33 coronavirus-linked deaths on Saturday, bringing the state’s death total to 2,608.
There have now been more than 2.8 million reported coronavirus cases and 129,718 coronavirus-related deaths in the US, according to Johns Hopkins’ data.
The US has reported more than 20,000 new cases every day since June 16, according to the CDC, peaking at 57,000 new cases on Friday. The last three days of data all had new case totals over 50,000.
An entrance sign at a drive-thru COVID-19 testing site on July 2, 2020 in central El Paso, Texas.
Cengiz Yar/Getty Images
Bar closures, curfews, and mandatory face masks: How Texas and Florida leaders are responding to the growing daily case totals
At the end of June, a surge of new coronavirus cases in Florida and Texas caused officials in both states to ban bars from serving alcohol in-person after they were previously allowed to reopen.
On July 2, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott signed a statewide order that requires masks to be worn in all public areas in counties with more than 20 reported coronavirus cases.
Texans who violate the face mask order could face a fine of up to $250, according to The Hill. The state order also gives authorities the ability to restrict outdoor gatherings with more than 10 people.
But ABC 13 reported Sunday that some Texas law enforcement officials say they’re not going to enforce the governor’s order to wear masks, setting up a legal showdown between local and state authorities.
A number of governors have issued statewide mandates for face masks, with Texas and California being recent additions to the list of states requiring face coverings in public spaces.
People in Cocoa Beach, Florida, get their temperature checked on July 4, 2020.
Paul Hennessy/NurPhoto via Getty Images
Meanwhile, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has not mandated a statewide order to require face masks but has instead left it, along with other coronavirus-related public health mandates, up to local governments to enforce.
Some parts of Florida closed public beaches for the Fourth of July, including Miami-Dade County, which barred visitors from gathering in public beaches and parks throughout the holiday weekend. Miami-Dade County is the most-infected area in the state.
Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez announced on Thursday that the county would start mandating a curfew from 10 p.m. until 6 a.m. “until further notice” in hopes of further curbing the spread of the virus.
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