March 28 coronavirus news

By James Griffiths, Brett McKeehan, Veronica Rocha, Amy Woodyatt and Amir Vera, CNN

Updated 3:33 p.m. ET, March 29, 2020
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12:43 p.m. ET, March 28, 2020

There are 52,318 confirmed coronavirus cases across New York

There are now 52,318 people confirmed to have Covid-19 across New York, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Saturday during a press conference.

The state has tested a total of 155,934 people, Cuomo said. At least 728 people have died from coronavirus across New York.

There were 172 people admitted into the ICU on March 27, Cuomo said.

If density compliance is not working on voluntary basis we can “get to a point” where play grounds will be closed, Cuomo said, remarking on the new guidelines for the NYC parks and some reports that they are not being followed.

12:41 p.m. ET, March 28, 2020

New York tax filing deadline extended due to coronavirus

Gov. Andrew Cuomo has extended the tax filing deadline in New York to July 15 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

"This is good news for individuals, for businesses. You don't have to file your state tax return. You file it with the federal tax return on July 15. It's bad news for the state of New York on a parochial level. That means we receive no revenue coming in until July 15," Cuomo said at a press conference Saturday.

Some more context: Individuals and businesses will have an extra 90 days to pay the IRS if they owe additional income tax for 2019, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said March 17.

Normally, taxpayers owe the amount due by April 15. But as part of the government's response to the coronavirus, individual and small business filers will be able to defer payments of up to $1 million and corporations can defer up to $10 million -- without incurring interest or penalties.

But taxpayers should still file their federal returns by April 15, Mnuchin said.

12:55 p.m. ET, March 28, 2020

Navy hospital ship expected in NYC by Monday, governor says

From CNN's Sheena Jones

Erin Schaff/Pool/AFP via Getty Images
Erin Schaff/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

USNS Comfort will be in New York City by Monday and will bring 1,000 beds to help with the coronavirus pandemic, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Saturday during a press conference.

The ship will be used to backfill hospitals, the governor said.

12:31 p.m. ET, March 28, 2020

Coronavirus shutdown has everyone "disoriented," New York governor says

From CNN's Sheena Jones

Darren McGee/Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo via AP
Darren McGee/Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo via AP

New York State Gov. Andrew Cuomo said the Covid-19 shutdown has everyone disoriented as the state continues to deal with the pandemic.

New York had its first coronavirus case 27 days ago and schools closed just 10-days ago. Cuomo said at a press conference Saturday. Non-essential workers were shutdown 8-day ago, he said.

Every emergency situation is unique and ventilators seem to be a top priority, he said.

New York's coronavirus apex is still forecasted to be 14-21 days away, the governor said.

The governor said New York will need about 140,000 beds at the height of the pandemic.

12:18 p.m. ET, March 28, 2020

United Nations to donate 250,000 protective masks to hospitals in NYC

From CNN's Richard Roth

The United Nations secretary general, in coordination with the US ambassador to the UN Kelly Craft, will donate 250,000 protective face masks to medical facilities in New York City.

These masks located in UN stores in New York will be given to the medical professionals in the city “who have been working courageously, selflessly, and tirelessly in response to the spread of COVID-19 across the boroughs in the hope that they play some small role in saving lives,” UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres said.

The UN and Craft are working with the mayor’s office to ensure the delivery of this equipment to medical facilities around the city

11:50 a.m. ET, March 28, 2020

First NYPD detective dies from coronavirus

From CNN's Brynn Gingras, Shimon Prokupecz and Mark Morales

The first New York Police Department detective has died from coronavirus, according to multiple law enforcement officials.

The detective was in his 40s and worked in the 32nd precinct which serves the northeastern portion of Harlem, the officials said.

He was admitted to a Bronx hospital three days ago and had underlying health conditions, according to the law enforcement officials.

Other law enforcement deaths: This is the third member of the NYPD to die from the virus.

Previously the NYPD announced a custodian assigned to police headquarters, a 14-year veteran of the NYPD family, Dennis C. Dickson had passed away from the virus.

Giacomina Barr-Brown, a civilian member of the service and a seven year veteran of the NYPD assigned to the 49th Precinct Roll Call Office, also died from the virus.

12:04 p.m. ET, March 28, 2020

Russia to close borders on March 30

From CNN’s Nathan Hodge

People walk along a platform after arriving by a special train from Ukraine at Kievsky Railway Station in Moscow on March 28.
People walk along a platform after arriving by a special train from Ukraine at Kievsky Railway Station in Moscow on March 28. AP

Russia will temporarily close its borders, with some exceptions, beginning March 30, the Russian government announced.

An order posted Saturday on the website of the Russian Cabinet of Ministers temporarily suspends traffic through automobile, railway, pedestrian and border crossings with the Russian Federation. The order takes effect at midnight Moscow time on Sunday.

Russia previously closed entry to foreigners and halted most international flights. The order provides exceptions for Russian diplomats, Russian media representatives and other officials, as well as for transportation workers.

The newest directive applies to checkpoints on the border between Russia and Belarus. The two countries have a relatively open border, but Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko has been publicly dismissive of international efforts to contain coronavirus, while the Russian government has stepped up its response.

11:39 a.m. ET, March 28, 2020

Spanish health official says the country is "reaching the peak of the curve"

From CNN’s Tim Lister in Spain

A group of civil protection volunteers from disinfects a street in L´Hospitalet, Spain, on March 27.
A group of civil protection volunteers from disinfects a street in L´Hospitalet, Spain, on March 27. Ramon Costa/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Spanish health officials have expressed cautious optimism that the peak of the coronavirus epidemic in the country is in sight.

"We are approaching, we do not know exactly when we will have confirmation, but we are reaching the peak of the curve," the director of Spain’s Center for Health Emergencies Fernando Simón said at a news conference in Madrid.

Simón pointed to figures showing slight declines in the percentage increase of fatalities, even as the actual number continues to rise.

"Unfortunately, there is still an increase in deaths. But it is true that the evolution over time remains more or less in what has been observed in recent days," he said. "According to various indicators, the disease is stabilizing. Although they are preliminary data, in some areas of the country the peak may have been reached, although at the national level we cannot confirm anything."

Simón warned that the pressure on intensive care units would worsen. Patients infected today, he said, may need an ICU bed within the next seven to ten days. The peak need may come in the next week, he said.

By the numbers: At the same briefing, Patricia Lacruz, a senior official in Spain’s National Health and Pharmacy System, said that more than 1.5 million masks would be distributed this weekend. Over the last two days, several flights have arrived in Spain carrying personal protective equipment for health service workers.

On trials for the treatment of coronavirus, María Jesús Lamas Díaz, director of the Spanish Agency for Medicines and Health Products, said 4,000 people would participate in authorized trials over the next few weeks.


11:03 a.m. ET, March 28, 2020

How the coronavirus is impacting US airlines

From CNN's Gregory Wallace

Jets sit parked on runway 28 at the Pittsburgh International Airport on March 27.
Jets sit parked on runway 28 at the Pittsburgh International Airport on March 27. Jeff Swensen/Getty Images

Thousands of grounded planes. Nearly empty flights. Airports that look like ghost towns.

That is the picture of aviation in an era where approximately 200 million Americans are under directives to stay at home and limit their travel due to the coronavirus.

A CNN review of the latest airline-related data gives a clearer picture of how air travel has ground to a halt, a result of isolation measures around the country. 

The latest announcement on Friday from American Airlines reflect the trends around the industry: Over the next two months, it expects to fly as little as 20% of its domestic schedule and between 10% and 20% of its international schedule.

Many of those planes have just a handful of passengers. American CEO Doug Parker said his planes are about 15% full. US airlines started the year filling about four of five available seats, but are now, on average, filling just one of every five seats, according to data from Airlines for America, an industry group. 

As the number of travelers nationwide has dropped, TSA has cut back on the number of checkpoints it operates, particularly at medium- and large-sized airports, according to an aviation official familiar with the matter. 

In some cases, the official said, the reductions have been linked to a reduced availability of officers to work. More than 60 TSA officers have tested positive for the coronavirus, according to agency data compiled by CNN. The union representing them said dozens more have needed to stay home due to the possibility of exposure.