Florida reported a whopping 8,942 new coronavirus cases Friday — nearly doubling its previous record set two days earlier and prompting an immediate shutdown of alcohol consumption at bars.
The Florida agency that governs bars announced the ban on Twitter just minutes after the Department of Health reported Friday’s numbers, which eclipsed the previous record of 5,508 set Wednesday.
“Effective immediately, the Department of Business and Professional Regulation is suspending on-premises consumption of alcohol at bars statewide,” Florida Department of Business & Professional Regulation Secretary Halsey Beshears tweeted.
Over the last week, Florida has recorded 29,163 new infections, which is nearly a quarter of the state’s total number of confirmed cases since the pandemic began more than three months ago, according to the Miami Herald. The state’s total number of confirmed cases now stands at 122,960.
Deaths in the peninsula are also skyrocketing with 137 new deaths reported Friday, the Department of Health announced, bringing the statewide death toll “north of 3,400,” the Herald reported.
The number of deceased patients nearly tripled overnight. On Thursday, just 46 deaths were reported.
The troubling numbers come after what the Herald called a “day of record testing.” But despite more tests, the infection rate is still well beyond the threshold recommended by public health experts, the outlet reported.
On Friday, out of 71,433 people tested, about 14.74% of those tests were reported to be positives, the outlet reported.
Miami-Dade County, the hardest-hit part of the state, reported 1,528 new cases with a 14.3% positivity rate — even though they’ve seen higher test results returned in a single day previously.
Neighboring Broward County, which covers Ft. Lauderdale, saw 750 new cases with an 11.7% positivity rate, the outlet reported.
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