Coronavirus

Coronavirus USA: which states have been declared part of the red zone and why?

A total of 21 states are now part of the red zone – areas which have more than 100 new cases of Covid-19 infection per 100,000 people during one week.

Coronavirus USA: which states have been declared part of the red zone and why?
BRYAN R. SMITH AFP

This week the United States surpassed 150,000 deaths due to Covid-19 and with positive cases edging towards 4.5 million, the federal government declared 21 states have entered the “red zone” areas where infection rates continue to rise to dangerous levels. States in the red zone territory are those which have registered more than 100 new cases of Covid-19 infection per 100,000 people during the week before 24 July.

Deaths rising, new cases slightly falling in some states

Covid-19 deaths have risen for three consecutive weeks with some states posting record, single-day highs in both fresh cases and in some cases, deaths. On Wednesday, Florida reported 216 fatalities – the highest number over 24 hours since the pandemic began. Much of the increase in infections is down to people ignoring social distancing and many refusing to wear a face mask – two measures which are known to slow down transmission.

21 U.S. states in the red zone

So now almost half of the countries states form part of the “red zone" - Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah and Wisconsin. Three states have been added to the red zone list during the past seven days - Missouri, North Dakota and Wisconsin while 28 states remain in the “yellow zone”. Only one state, Vermont, is in the “green zone” for recording fewer than 10 cases per 100,000 people per week.

States in the red zone have been ordered to close down areas where social distancing cannot be observed such as bars while restaurants have their seating capacity limited to 25%. The New York Times claims the government report also includes making face masks obligatory until the situation improves.

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