July 3 coronavirus news

By Jessie Yeung, Melissa Macaya, Amy Woodyatt and Veronica Rocha, CNN

Updated 2311 GMT (0711 HKT) February 1, 2021
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11:50 a.m. ET, July 3, 2020

Social distancing guidelines will not be required at Trump's Mt. Rushmore event

From CNN's Betsy Klein

Visitors walk to see the Mount Rushmore National Monument in Keystone, South Dakota on July 2.
Visitors walk to see the Mount Rushmore National Monument in Keystone, South Dakota on July 2. Andrew Caballero/AFP/Getty Images

President Trump and first lady Melania Trump head to Mount Rushmore National Memorial on Friday to celebrate an early Fourth of July at a gathering of an estimated 7,500 people during a global pandemic.

No social distancing is planned for the event despite the record-high new coronavirus cases in the US.

"We told those folks that have concerns that they can stay home, but those who want to come and join us, we'll be giving out free face masks if they choose to wear one. But we won't be social distancing," Republican Gov. Kristi Noem said during a Monday appearance on Fox News.

There may be health screening for ticketed guests in one area, according to recreation.gov. A recording on the park's main telephone line Monday said: "There are no social distancing requirements in place at this time."

The 7,500 tickets for Friday's event are lower than the typical visitor flow during the busy summer season.

On normal days, 28,000 to 32,000 visitors come to Mount Rushmore during a 10-hour period. Amid the pandemic, the park never closed but visitation has been down to around 20,000 people, said Maureen McGee-Ballinger, Mount Rushmore's chief of interpretation and education.

Latest on the state's cases: Coronavirus cases in South Dakota currently remain stable, according to data from Johns Hopkins University, with 6,893 confirmed cases and 97 deaths as of Thursday  — but it remains to be seen how many attendees will travel from other states. Thirty-six states are currently experiencing a rise in new cases.

11:36 a.m. ET, July 3, 2020

More US states are issuing sweeping mask mandates as Covid-19 cases rise

From CNN's Faith Karimi and Steve Almasy

People wear facemasks while visiting Santa Monica Pier on June 26 in Santa Monica, California.
People wear facemasks while visiting Santa Monica Pier on June 26 in Santa Monica, California. Frederic J. Brown/AFP/Getty Images

When mask mandates for Texas and Kansas go into effect Friday, at least 19 states and Washington, DC will have such requirements.

In a major change of heart, Texas won't allow people who are in counties with 20 or more active Covid-19 cases to go out without a face covering. About 95% of Texans live in those areas.

"We have the ability to keep businesses open and move our economy forward so that Texans can continue to earn a paycheck, but it requires each of us to do our part to protect one another  — and that means wearing a face covering in public spaces," Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said.

Texans younger than 10 and people who have a medical condition that prevents them from wearing a mask are exempted. Repeat violations can result in a fine, the order says.

These states have mandated masks when out in public:

  • California
  • Connecticut
  • Delaware
  • District of Columbia
  • Hawaii
  • Illinois
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky
  • Maine
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • Nevada
  • New Jersey
  • New Mexico
  • New York
  • Oregon
  • Pennsylvania
  • Rhode Island
  • Texas

At least 36 states are currently seeing a rise in new cases compared to the previous week, nine of them have increased by over 50%. They are Montana, Idaho, Nevada, Florida, Georgia, Tennessee, Louisiana, Alaska and Delaware.

Read more about the individual state mandates:

11:34 a.m. ET, July 3, 2020

Anyone traveling from the US to England will have to quarantine for 14 days

From CNN's Nada Bashir

The UK government has revealed a new “travel corridor” list – including 59 states and 14 British Overseas Territories – from which travelers will now be exempted from the formerly established 14-day isolation period. 

“The government is satisfied that it is now safe to ease these measures in England and has introduced travel corridors for some countries and territories,” the Department for Transport said Friday in a statement. 

“This applies to all travel to England, by train, ferry, coach, air or any other route,” the statement added. 

According to the announcement, starting on July 10, unless they have visited or stopped in any other country or territory in the preceding 14 days, passengers arriving from the countries and territories that are part of the "travel corridor" list will not be required to self-isolate on arrival into England.

The United States is not included in the list. Earlier on Friday, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps confirmed that the country would not be included, due to the high infection rate in country. 

“Here, we've got things under control, but we know that [the virus] is still raging in parts of the world…so I'm afraid there is a red list," Shapps told BBC Radio 4. 

“The US, from a very early stage, banned flights from the UK and from Europe, so there isn’t a reciprocal arrangement in place,” he added, highlighting that the US still has a “very high” rate of infection.

While travelers will not be required to self-isolate on arrival to the UK, the government has confirmed that travelers from the UK must comply with coronavirus requirements in the country they travel to. 

“This may include self-isolating or providing your details to local authorities,” the Department for Transport outlined. 

Before arriving in the UK, travelers will also be required to complete a “passenger locator” form. 

“We will keep the conditions in these countries and territories under review. If they worsen, we will not hesitate to reintroduce self-isolation requirements,” the Department for Transport said. 

“This list may be added to over the coming days following further discussions between the UK and international partners,” the statement added.

Here are the countries and territories that are part of the "travel corridor" list: Andorra, Germany, New Zealand, Antigua and Barbuda, Greece, Norway, Aruba, Greenland, Poland, Australia, Grenada, Réunion, Austria, Guadeloupe, San Marino, Bahamas, Hong Kong, Serbia, Barbados, Hungary, Seychelles, Belgium, Iceland, South Korea, Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba, Italy, Spain, Croatia, Jamaica, St Barthélemy, Curaçao, Japan, St Kitts and Nevis, Cyprus, Liechtenstein, St Lucia, Czech Republic, Lithuania, St Pierre and Miquelon, Denmark, Luxembourg, Switzerland, Dominica, Macau, Taiwan, Faroe Islands, Malta, Trinidad and Tobago, Fiji, Mauritius, Turkey, Finland, Monaco, Vatican City, France, Netherlands, Vietnam, French Polynesia, New Caledonia

10:55 a.m. ET, July 3, 2020

"There's nothing more American” than staying home July 4 to protect others, Miami Beach mayor says

From CNN's Adrienne Vogt

Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber speaks with CNN’s Jim Sciutto on July 3.
Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber speaks with CNN’s Jim Sciutto on July 3. CNN

Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber says there should be a statewide mask mandate in Florida and across the whole US.

“There's over 1,300 Covid patients in my county right now and 1,000 people have died. … It's not time to make political statements about wearing a mask. It's time to comply and make sacrifices for everybody else,” he told CNN’s Jim Sciutto.

Beaches in Miami Beach are now closed for the holiday weekend. There is a curfew in place and masks are mandatory in public places. Gelber encouraged his residents to stay home and celebrate the Fourth of July.

“There's nothing more American than making a sacrifice by staying home, to keep a family member safe, a neighbor safe or a stranger safe,” he said.

Gelber said there have been mixed messages about the coronavirus from state and national leaders, which confuses people and is daunting for city officials.

“It would be help, like [during] a hurricane, we all stand up and we say the right things to the community so they don't wonder whether they need to do something,” he said.

The mayor took aim at President Trump’s remarks that there’s only more coronavirus cases in the country because there is more testing.

“This whole argument that there's more Covid simply because we're testing more is absurd. You can't fake being so sick you have to be hospitalized or so absolutely sick, you’ve got to be in intensive care or on a ventilator,” Gelber said.

Watch the interview:

10:58 a.m. ET, July 3, 2020

Pakistan's foreign minister tests positive for Covid-19

From CNN’s Sophia Saifi, Jane Lee and Hamdi Alkhshali

Pakistan's Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi speaks during a news conference on March 1 in Doha, Qatar.
Pakistan's Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi speaks during a news conference on March 1 in Doha, Qatar. Farooq Naeem/AFP/Getty Images

Pakistan's Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi confirms he has tested positive for Covid-19 via his official Twitter account on Friday.

According to the foreign minister, he felt a slight fever and immediately quarantined at home. He plans on carrying his duties from home. It's not clear when he was infected. 

Qureshi Tweeted:

“This afternoon I felt a slight fever and immediately quarantined myself at home. I have now tested positive for Covid 19. By the grace of Allah, I feel strong and energetic. I will continue to carry on my duties from home. Please keep me in your prayers.”

Qureshi met the US Special Representative for Afghanistan on Wednesday, according to the Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry.

11:03 a.m. ET, July 3, 2020

How states with surging Covid-19 cases are preparing for July 4 weekend

From CNN's Faith Karimi and Steve Almasy

A sign is posted at a closed entrance to the beach on July 3 in the South Beach neighborhood of Miami Beach, Florida.
A sign is posted at a closed entrance to the beach on July 3 in the South Beach neighborhood of Miami Beach, Florida. Lynne Sladky/AP

Officials fear Fourth of July weekend could bring a surge in cases, and are urging Americans to limit their festivities to avoid more outbreaks.

The holiday weekend could be the "perfect storm" for a spike in coronavirus cases due to travel, easing restrictions and people not following preventive guidelines, according to Dr. Joshua Barocas, an infectious disease physician at Boston Medical Center.

The US reported more than 52,000 new cases of the virus on Thursday, a new daily record, surpassing one set the previous day.

California, Arizona, Texas and Florida all posted record new cases this week. Florida reported more than 10,000 additional coronavirus cases Thursday, while Texas had about 8,000.

CNN's correspondents in Florida, Texas, Arizona and California report on how the states are preparing for Fourth of July:

4:32 p.m. ET, July 3, 2020

US surgeon general urges caution on US Covid-19 death rate: “We know deaths lag at least two weeks”

From CNN's Gisela Crespo and Arman Azad

US Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams urged caution when looking at the US death rate for the virus remaining flat while the number of new cases increases. 

"We know deaths lag at least two weeks and can lag even more," Adams said, speaking on "Fox & Friends" on Friday. "In the beginning, nursing homes were hit really hard, and the majority of our deaths were occurring on people who were 60, 65 and older. Now the majority of cases are in people who have an average age of 35, and so those folks are gonna have less comorbidities, they're gonna be less likely to end up in the hospital and to die." 

However, Adams said, "What we're really worried about  — particularly with young people  — is that they get it and then they spread it to their grandmother, to their grandfather." 

Adams called on the younger population to wear a face covering, practice social distancing when going out this weekend, and to take extra precautions if they live with someone who is older or vulnerable. 

The latest figures: According to Johns Hopkins University's tally of cases in the US, at least 128,740 people have died in the country from coronavirus. 

An ensemble forecast published by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention now projects nearly 148,000 coronavirus deaths in the country by July 25.

This week’s national forecast relies on 24 individual forecasts from outside institutions and researchers. The new projections, published Thursday, forecast 147,865 deaths by July 25, with a possible range of about 139,000 to 161,000 deaths.

Unlike some individual models, the CDC’s ensemble forecast only offers projections for the next month. The previous ensemble forecast, published last Wednesday, projected about 139,000 coronavirus deaths by July 18.

Watch Surgeon General's call to wear face coverings:

9:41 a.m. ET, July 3, 2020

European countries urged to exempt "sweethearts" from current travel restrictions

From CNN’s James Frater

European Union Home Affairs Commissioner Ylva Johansson has urged European countries to apply “as wide a definition of partnerships as possible” to exempt the “partner or ‘sweetheart’,“ of an EU citizen from EU coronavirus travel restrictions.

The EU published on Tuesday a set of guidelines that allows for the gradual reopening of Europe’s external borders starting July 1.

The guidelines, which are primarily based on health criteria and preventing a second wave of the coronavirus pandemic, define a “family member” as a spouse, a registered partnership equivalent to marriage, children or dependents under the age of 21 and dependent direct relatives.

“Family members of EU citizens and of residents of the EU” are exempted from the travel restrictions explained European Commission Spokesperson Adalbert Jahnz, adding, “there isn’t any further definition of family member in this context.”

However, there is space for change in the guidelines and specific categories of travelers “may be reviewed by the Council, in close consultation with the Commission,” based on “social and economic considerations as well as the overall assessment of the evolution of the epidemiological situation.” 

Denmark had already expanded its definition of traveller with a “worthy purpose” to include “boyfriends/girlfriends, fiancées, grandparents and grandchildren, as well as business travel, job interviews,” in the list of those able to journey to the country.

This is news social media campaigners using the hashtags #LoveIsEssential and #LoveIsNotTourism have welcomed, like German/American boyfriend and girlfriend Eglain and Zuri.

American Zuri wrote on her social media: “It feels like I woke up to a hopeful miracle. I hope this is step in the right direction for couples separated by this travel ban.”

Her German boyfriend Eglain also took to social media, writing: “The head of European home affairs is supporting our cause of reuniting binational couples separated by travel bans!” Adding German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas to his tweet, Eglain added, “Now the member states need to act and implement exemptions for us.”

9:28 a.m. ET, July 3, 2020

Here are some tips for staying safe this July 4 weekend

From CNN's Alaa Elassar

People sit on Hollywood Beach on, July 2 in Hollywood, Florida.
People sit on Hollywood Beach on, July 2 in Hollywood, Florida. Lynne Sladky/AP

While most Americans are used to spending the Fourth of July holiday with friends at the beach or by the pool, this year the country is celebrating a little differently.

The coronavirus pandemic continues and numbers are skyrocketing with the three-most populous states setting new records for new daily coronavirus cases.

While this doesn't necessarily mean canceling your plans for the day, there are steps you can take to keep yourself and others around you healthy this holiday:

Heading to a beach or a pool?

  • Since risk of infection is thought to be lower outside, where wind can blow the virus away, you can have fun without fear, as long as you observe social distancing measures.
  • Before heading out, it's a good idea to find out if the pool or beach you're going to is enforcing safety protocols, like social distancing rules or restricting the number of people who have access at one time. If you find that the beach or pool is too crowded to always maintain at least 6 feet from others, it might be safer to save the trip for another day.
  • Bring your own disinfectant wipes to clean shared chairs or pool toys and wear a face mask when you're not in the water.
  • Whether you're in or out of the water, keep your distance from other people. Don't swim close enough to other people that you'll come in contact with their spit or breath.
  • Don't blow your nose or spit in the pool or near another person. If you can, exit the water and use a tissue to cough or sneeze, then wash your hands.

Planning a barbecue?

  • Depending on your state, there may be regulations and limits on how many people can attend a social gathering.
  • Remember that the more people you come in contact with, the higher your risk of getting infected. if you are going to invite people you haven't been isolating with, there are a few precautions you can take to make your cookout safer.
  • One tip is having everyone bring their own food and plastic utensils -- this means no shared bowl of chips. Hot dogs and hamburgers should go directly from the grill to a person's plate, not to a big tray of food. Different households should sit together — separately.
  • If you have a lot of people in attendance, its also a good idea to wear a mask.
  • If guests have no choice but to go inside your home to use the bathroom, have all the doors going toward the bathroom open, so no one has to touch any other handles. Have guests use a piece of tissue to open and close the bathroom door and make a note to close the toilet seat before flushing.

Read the full article: