Long lines of cars were seen outside coronavirus testing facilities as the number of positive cases surged in Los Angeles.
The footage filmed by comedian Brad Wollack runs for 45 seconds and shows a continuous line of vehicles waiting outside the drive-through testing station at the VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System around 9am on November 19.
Covid-19 case rates increased by approximately 50 per cent in California during the first week of November with LA Mayor Eric Garcetti describing crisis as “very dangerous” and urged residents to be cautious as the busy holiday season approaches.
“The US is breaking new infection records every day and averaging more than one COVID-19 death every minute.
“L.A. is in a very dangerous situation. I am calling on every Angeleno to take action to save lives and stop the spread of this virus,” Mayor Garcetti tweeted on November 18.
A recent surge in daily cases throughout the state has reached its highest numbers yet with John Hopkins University reporting over 10,000 virus cases confirmed daily in California.
‘We are sounding the alarm’: California in lockdown
As of 10 pm Saturday (local time) affected counties in California, including LA County, will go into lockdown with residents asked to stay home until December 21, except for essential activities.
“The virus is spreading at a pace we haven’t seen since the start of this pandemic and the next several days and weeks will be critical to stop the surge. We are sounding the alarm,” California Governor Gavin Newsom said in a statement released on Thursday (local time).
The new lockdown is similar to the March stay at home order Californians faced, but applied only between 10 PM and 5 AM, and only in counties that are seeing the highest rates of positive cases and hospitalisations.
Similar scenes of heavy traffic were seen days ago at Dodger Stadium with thousands of cars filled with residents waiting to be tested at the makeshift covid-19 clinic set up at the popular baseball stadium.
The state’s acting Public Health Officer cautioned locals to follow stay at home orders and stay vigilant and cautioned an unprecedented surge is likely if cases continue their steep climb.
“We are asking Californians to change their personal behaviours to stop the surge. We must be strong together and make tough decisions to stay socially connected but physically distanced during this critical time. Letting our guard down could put thousands of lives in danger and cripple our health care system,” Dr. Erica Pan said.
“Together we prevented a public health crisis in the spring and together we can do it again.”
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