Coronavirus: Texas reports highest number of deaths in one day, hours before state plans to relax lockdown

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State's stay-at-home order to expire as scheduled today

World | The Independent

Texas has recorded the highest number of coronavirus deaths in one day since the outbreak started, despite being hours away from its planned reopening.

A total of 50 people died from the disease in the state on Thursday, bringing the state's toll to 782, according to The Houston Chronicle.

The state also recorded its largest increase in infections in one day since 10 April adding 1,000 new cases of Covid-19 and bringing its total to more than 28,000.

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The numbers come as governor Greg Abbott plans to go ahead with measures to restart the state's economy during the coronavirus pandemic and relax lockdown measures on Friday.

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The governor will let the state's stay-at-home order expire as scheduled on Thursday and allow businesses to begin re-opening 1 May.

A select number of businesses will be allowed to re-open including malls, movie theatres, retail stores and restaurants, however, they can only operate at 25 per cent of their maximum capacity for the next two weeks.

“This strategic approach to opening the state of Texas prioritises the health and safety of our communities and follows the guidelines laid out by our team of medical experts,” the Republican governor said Monday.

“As Texas ramps up testing, there will be more positive cases,” Gov Abbott spokesman John Wittman said. “The hospitalisation rate has remained steady and the fact remains Texas has one of the lowest death rates per capita in the country, showing the success of our efforts.”

The Texas Democratic Party issued a statement attacking Gov Abbott's decision to reopen.

“Today is a dark day in Texas,” the statement said. “Abbott’s decision to let Texas’ stay-at-home order expire is reckless, irresponsible, and puts all of us at risk.”

The 119 reported deaths over the past three days mark the worst period of casualties from the disease since the first recorded death in the state on 17 March.

Additional reporting by The Associated Press.

  • Coronavirus: Texas reports highest number of deaths in one day, hours before state plans to relax lockdown photo

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