August 9 coronavirus news

By Ben Westcott, Steve George, Amy Woodyatt, Ed Upright, Fernando Alfonso III and Amir Vera, CNN

Updated 12:03 a.m. ET, August 10, 2020
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10:53 p.m. ET, August 9, 2020

Australian state of Victoria reports highest daily total of coronavirus deaths

From CNN's Angus Watson in Sydney and Isaac Yee in Hong Kong

The Australian state of Victoria recorded 19 new coronavirus deaths on Sunday -- the highest single-day increase in fatalities since the outbreak of the pandemic, Victoria’s Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) said Monday morning. 

Victoria also reported 322 new cases of coronavirus from Sunday, the lowest daily increase in cases since July 29, according to the DHHS. 

“I want to start by expressing my sincere condolences to all the families of the 19 Australians in Victoria who have passed away because of the COVID infection,” said Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Monday.

He added that the news is "devastating.” 

The numbers: Victoria now has 14,981 confirmed cases of the coronavirus, while the death toll has increased to 229.

Australia has reported more than 21,000 coronavirus cases, including 313 deaths.

10:30 p.m. ET, August 9, 2020

Mexico surpasses 480,000 total coronavirus cases

From journalist Karol Suarez in Mexico City and CNN’s Claudia Dominguez in Atlanta

A worker wears personal protective equipment (PPE) to treat a patient infected with Covid-19 in Mexico City, on August 8.
A worker wears personal protective equipment (PPE) to treat a patient infected with Covid-19 in Mexico City, on August 8. Eyepix/Sipa USA

Mexico’s Health Ministry reported 4,376 new Covid-19 infections on Sunday, bringing the country’s total number of cases to 480,278.

The ministry also registered 292 new deaths, raising the country’s death toll to 52,298.

Moment of silence: Earlier on Sunday, Mexico’s President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador paid tribute to the victims of the pandemic and healthcare workers by holding a moment of silence in the presidential palace in Mexico City.  

In a video posted on his Twitter account, Lopez Obrador can be seen walking down the halls of the presidential palace into an empty courtyard where he joins a soldier.

The President claps after the soldier blows a horn in honor of the victims.

Lopez Obrador said that was the best way to honor the victims of the “tremendous pandemic” and said his government would continue to improve the country’s health system. 

8:47 p.m. ET, August 9, 2020

One Paulding County middle school student in Georgia tests positive for coronavirus after nine positives reported at high school

From CNN's Hollie Silverman

One student at Sammy McClure, Sr. Middle School in Paulding County, Georgia, has tested positive for the coronavirus, according to a letter sent to parents by Principal Jaynath Hayes.

The student was in school "for at least some time last week" and reported to the school that they have tested positive, the letter said. 

The school is being cleaned by custodial staff and is following Georgia Department of Public Health recommendations, according to the letter.

The school is asking anyone whose child exhibits symptoms to have them tested as soon as possible and notify the school.

The district's high school has already announced that it will close for at least the next two days for cleaning after nine people tested positive. The school will move to digital learning Monday and Tuesday and announce the next steps Tuesday evening, a letter from the district said. 

8:11 p.m. ET, August 9, 2020

Georgia student who shared photo of crowded hallways at Paulding HS says she's received threats

From CNN's Hollie Silverman

Georgia high school student Hannah Watters.
Georgia high school student Hannah Watters. CNN

North Paulding High School sophomore Hannah Watters, who shared a photo of the crowded hallways at her school, told CNN's Boris Sanchez Sunday night that she has received threats over her release of the photo. 

Hannah said she and her family and friends have been receiving screenshots of group chats in the school with threatening language against her.

One message said "I know where this girl lives," Hannah said. Other threats, she said, included, "We're going to jump every girl named Hannah in the 10th grade," and "Hannah is going to have a rough day at school on Monday."

"I feel like a lot of teachers have my back because they know how dangerous it is going to school. But I know that a lot of the kids that I go to school with, I've already gotten backlash for it, threats and things like that," Hannah said. "I know I'm doing the right thing and it's not going to stop me from continuing doing it. But it is concerning, especially since it's a lot of the people I go to school with, people I've known for years now, that are threatening me."

She said that she understands that seniors are worried they may have their last year of high school taken away from them and that she doesn't want that. Hannah only released the photo to keep people safe, she said.

"I just hope that sooner or later everyone can understand that I'm not trying to shut it down and when I did expose the school district, it wasn't to cancel the senior year, not to go after anyone. It was just to keep us all safe." Hannah said. "Because you wouldn't have your senior year because sooner or later the school was going to shut down and if we shut down or just go online for a week earlier, we can contain it quicker and we can use the rest of your senior year, the rest of the school year normally."

Following the news that the school will close for cleaning for the next two days after nine new cases were identified, Hannah said many people have told her they are getting tested.

8:16 p.m. ET, August 9, 2020

Over 350 cars stopped at NYC 'quarantine checkpoints' during first three days

From CNN’s Alec Snyder

Over 350 cars were stopped at New York City “quarantine checkpoints” in the first three days after being established, according to Laura Feyer, press secretary for NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio.

Feyer said there were 353 total stops across the city from Wednesday through Friday. Approximately 1,100 masks were distributed as well, Feyer said.

On Wednesday, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced that several checkpoints would be set up around the city to give travelers from travel advisory states information about the quarantine and to remind them that it’s mandatory. Travelers who fail to quarantine are subject to a $10,000 fine and individuals who refuse to fill out the New York State Department of Health travel form are subject to a $2,000 fine, de Blasio said.

The checkpoints will also be at major bridge and tunnel crossings, New York City Sheriff Joseph Fucito said Wednesday.

6:52 p.m. ET, August 9, 2020

MLB postpones St. Louis Cardinals series against Pittsburgh Pirates

From CNN's Kevin Dotson

The exterior of Busch Stadium in St. Louis on Friday, August 7.
The exterior of Busch Stadium in St. Louis on Friday, August 7. Jeff Roberson/AP

Major League Baseball has postponed the St. Louis Cardinals’ three-game series against the Pittsburgh Pirates, scheduled to begin Monday, due to recent positive Covid-19 test results. 

The Cardinals have now had 13 consecutive games postponed due to a coronavirus outbreak within the team that has seen at least eight players and six staffers test positive for Covid-19.

Here is the full MLB statement:

"Major League Baseball announced today that the upcoming three-game series between the St. Louis Cardinals and the Pittsburgh Pirates, scheduled for Monday through Wednesday at Busch Stadium in St. Louis, has been postponed. In light of the most recent positive test results, MLB and the Club believe it is prudent to conduct additional testing while players and staff are quarantined before the team returns to play. More information regarding the Cardinals’ resumption of play will be announced later in the week."

6:37 p.m. ET, August 9, 2020

Chicago mayor shares photo of crowded Chicago beach, warns of closures if 'reckless behavior' continues

From CNN's Hollie Silverman

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot tweeted a picture of a crowded beach Sunday, saying that the crowds and "reckless behavior" will make the city shut down parks and the lake front.

"Don't make us take steps backwards," Lightfoot tweeted.

6:10 p.m. ET, August 9, 2020

Georgia high school where viral picture was taken announces it will implement virtual learning Monday

From CNN's Chuck Johnston

Students walk down a crowded hallway at North Paulding High School.
Students walk down a crowded hallway at North Paulding High School. Hannah Watters

North Paulding High School in Georgia will have digital learning only on both Monday and Tuesday, according to a letter from the school district sent to parents this evening.

"We have consulted with the Department of Public Health and are temporarily switching the instructional model to digital learning at NPHS,” the letter read in part. “Tuesday evening parents and students will be notified of whether digital learning will continue, or if in-person instruction may resume.”

“The school will be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected on Monday and Tuesday and the district will consult with the Department of Public Health to assess the environment and determine if there are any additional close contacts for confirmed cases who have not already been identified,” the letter read.

At least nine cases of Covid-19 have been reported at the Georgia high school that came under scrutiny last week after a student shared a photo of a crowded hallway, according to a letter from the school's principal.

6:06 p.m. ET, August 9, 2020

Brazil reports almost 600 new coronavirus deaths, one day after surpassing 100,000 total deaths

From journalist Rodrigo Pedroso in Sao Paulo

Brazil has reported 572 people have died of coronavirus in the past 24 hours, a day after the country surpassed a total of 100,000 coronavirus deaths.

On Sunday, Brazil’s Health Ministry said the total number of people recorded to have died from the coronavirus is now 101,049.

The ministry also announced 23,010 new cases were registered on Sunday, bringing the total number of infections in the country to 3,035,422.

Brazil continues to trail only the United States in terms of the world’s highest number of coronavirus cases and deaths.