On the same beach, Patricia Patton said she felt safe and she didn’t have to wear a mask.
“There’s nobody that has been near me or in my space at all,” she told the affiliate.
“Even as states and some state officials rush to reopen it’s on us to make smart and safe decisions,” Dr. Seema Yasmin, a former disease detective at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, told CNN Saturday night. “If you … look at the numbers, you’ll see that on Thursday more than 20,000 Americans were infected … Just yesterday, that number went up and there were more than 24,000 Americans newly diagnosed with Covid-19.”
States such as North Carolina and Arkansas are seeing major spikes, Yasmin said.
Some states raise more concern than others
Houston mayor: ‘We’re not equipped’ to handle surge
Texas beaches also saw crowds over the weekend after bars were allowed to reopen Friday with restrictions.
Texas is one of a handful of Southern states at risk of seeing a rapid surge of new coronavirus cases in some areas, according to a new outbreak predictions model.
“We’re not equipped to handle that type of surge,” Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer on Saturday. “We can take about 200 cases a day, for example, with contact tracing and we’re building up that program.”
“I’m worried,” he said. “The virus is still here. There are still people who think it’s a joke and it’s not a joke. Things have opened up. We’re in stage two in the state of Texas so bars, restaurants, barbershops, you name it, are now open. So (we’re) nervous but we’re going to do everything we can to manage the virus.”
43rd NYPD member dies
In New York, the city’s police force announced it lost a 43rd member due to complications of the virus.
New York Police Department School Safety Agent Doris Kirkland died Friday after serving in that role for over 30 years, the NYPD said.
More than 5,700 members of the department have tested positive for the virus.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed an executive order Friday allowing gatherings of up to 10 people, saying the move shouldn’t impact the state’s ability to continue reopening.
The state is on track to reopen its eighth region this week, the governor said Saturday.
Study yields encouraging results
Meanwhile, researchers are encouraged after a study appeared to show patients who receive transfusions of antibody-filled convalescent plasma seem to fare better.
“We are encouraged that our initial assessment offers evidence in support of convalescent plasma as an effective intervention,” said Dr. Nicole Bouvier, an associate professor at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai and a co-author on the study.
But more studies are needed to confirm the findings, the researchers said in a statement.
CNN’s Melissa Alonso, Jason Hanna, Dakin Andone and Amir Vera, Arman Azad, Barbara Starr and Laura Ly contributed to this report.