- New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo declared a state of emergency on Saturday as the number of novel coronavirus cases surge across the US.
- Twenty more people in New York have tested positive for coronavirus, officials said Saturday, bringing the total number of confirmed cases in the state to 76.
- Cuomo said there are 11 confirmed cases in New York City, 57 in Westchester County, two in Rockland County, four in Nassau County, and two in Saratoga County.
- The total number of confirmed cases across the US is 312, and there have been 17 deaths as of Saturday.
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New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo declared a state of emergency on Saturday as the number of novel coronavirus cases surge across the US.
Twenty more people in New York have tested positive for coronavirus, Cuomo said Saturday, bringing the total number of confirmed cases in the state to 76.
Cuomo said there are 11 confirmed cases in New York City, 57 in Westchester County, two in Rockland County, four in Nassau County, and two in Saratoga County.
In New York City, there are seven more confirmed cases in addition to the four reported on Friday. Two of those people recently got off a cruise, and five seem to be cases of community spread, Cuomo said. One of the newly confirmed individuals is currently hospitalized.
The governor declares a state of emergency when they believe a disaster may be imminent or severe enough to require state aid to local officials. Declaring a state of emergency also authorizes the governor to quickly direct state agency resources to communities in need. In extraordinary circumstances, it may also enable the state to request federal assistance if the state doesn’t have enough resources to address or contain the emergency.
Officials have reported 312 cases of coronavirus and 17 deaths across the US as of Saturday. Florida reported the first death on the East Coast on Friday and a number of new cases along with Georgia on Saturday. Meanwhile, 21 people on board the Grand Princess, a cruise ship docked off the coast of California, have tested positive for the virus.
In New York, according to The New York Times, a taxi or ride-hailing driver tested positive, resulting in more than 40 doctors and others at the hospital treating him to go into self-quarantine.
Also on Saturday, Amtrak canceled its nonstop service between New York and Washington, DC, because of a lack of demand.
The company said it would cancel service until May 26 and said in a statement, “We are making temporary adjustments to our schedule, such as removing train cars or canceling trains when there is a convenient alternative with a similar schedule that will have minimal impact to customers.”
The Trump administration, meanwhile, is facing intense scrutiny over its response to the coronavirus outbreak.
President Donald Trump has largely downplayed the severity of the outbreak and placed officials with little to no background in managing public health crises or infectious diseases in charge of spearheading the White House’s response.
On Friday, the president drew sharp backlash when he told reporters that although scientific and medical experts had urged him to bring infected Americans off the cruise ship, he didn’t want to do so because it would cause the number of reported cases to go up and it “wasn’t our fault.”