Dan Gelber, the mayor of Miami Beach, said his jurisdiction and other spots in Florida are likely a week or two away from resorting to strict “shelter-in-place” orders if the coronavirus situation does not improve.
“If our hospitals are incapable of providing care to the community, that’s a hard stop for everybody,” Mr. Gelber said on CNN. “So I suspect if in a week or two this is not changed in any way, then we’re all going to do it.”
“Whether the governor wants us to or not, we’ll do it, the county will do it, lots of the cities will do it — it’ll just be a shelter in place again,” he said.
Mr. Gelber said people can stop that outcome from happening if they “stop listening to people telling them that everything’s fine.”
Florida on Sunday reported more than 15,000 new coronavirus cases, setting a single-day record for any U.S. state.
“For crying out loud, we had the vice president here last week telling us that we’re in a much better place and then immediately — it’s [as] if the virus had a heightened sense of irony and karma — we had the worst couple days in the history of the pandemic anywhere in the world, literally, in Florida,” Mr. Gelber said.
“You can’t keep telling people that everything is just fine and not to worry, because this is not a virus that responds to political speaking points,” he said.
Other states are also pausing their reopening plans or dialing things back.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom on Monday announced he was closing bars and indoor eating at restaurants.
Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner on Monday said he proposed a “two-week shutdown” for his city to Texas Gov. Greg Abbott to try to help get things back under control.