USA: Two states announce new pandemic restrictions

Michigan joined Washington and several other states in announcing renewed measures to combat the coronavirus after the number of reported infections in the United States surpasses 11 million – including one million in less than a week – and as many Americans enlist celebrate Thanksgiving.

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer ordered the suspension of face-to-face classes at high schools and colleges, the closure of indoor restaurants and the suspension of organized sports – including postseason football games – in an attempt to stem the spike in infections in the entity.

The order also restricts indoor and outdoor residential gatherings, the closure of entertainment centers and a ban on holding group classes in gyms. The new measures are scheduled to last three weeks.

The guidelines in Michigan were released the same day Washington Gov. Jay Inslee announced that the state will continue to apply restrictions on businesses and social gatherings for the next month, in an attempt to combat the surge in cases.

Beginning Tuesday, gyms and some entertainment centers in Washington will need to shut down indoor services.

Retail stores, including food stores, must limit their capacity and the entry of several members of a single family, social gatherings will also be prohibited unless attendees have been in quarantine for 14 days or have tested negative. diagnostic and remain in isolation for a week. For Wednesday, the service of bars and restaurants for outdoor service and to go will be limited again.

The actions came after Texas and California passed the one million mark for confirmed COVID-19 cases since the start of the pandemic.

In Texas, sporting events were canceled and at least one city installed mobile morgues in anticipation of health services being overwhelmed by deaths.

Meanwhile in California, the nation’s most populous state and the first to issue a state confinement order, authorities called on all those planning to host Thanksgiving gatherings to take strict precautions, including holding meetings with few people, outdoors and of less than two hours.

Despite not being as restrictive as last spring’s orders, the measures in Michigan and Washington meant actions similar to those implemented in the first months of the pandemic in the United States, when both entities ordered strict confinement.