SANTA FE, N.M. (KRQE) – New Mexico’s COVID-19 case number keeps going up. With the governor calling this the worst crisis the state has ever face and predicting it could be another nine months before a vaccine is readily available and life starts getting back to normal. Now, the governor is threatening more restrictions and says her next plan of action is to ramp up enforcement. This comes as the state announced a record COVID spread rate Thursday.
“If we don’t get it right, I have to restrict high-risk activities. That’s the only tool I have in my toolbox. It will save lives and it will prevent us from overwhelming our hospital and healthcare system,” said Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham, in a Thursday COVID-19 update.
Thursday marks the biggest single-day jump in COVID-19 cases to date with 672, nearly 100 more than the previous peak announced Wednesday. This week, we’re seeing record-breaking infections in the workplace with 611 Rapid Responses, mostly at healthcare-related businesses. Climbing case numbers means the state could soon go back to restricting indoor dining and rolling back maximum occupancy in retail stores.
The governor is urging people to stay home and shop locally online and avoid indoor activities. All restaurants that sell alcohol have to close by 10 p.m. starting Friday. Of course, restrictions don’t do anything if people don’t follow them. She wants to beef up enforcement that includes making sure people coming here from out of state quarantine for two weeks but didn’t say how they’d do that.
“The Department of Health can and will enforce mandatory quarantine for violators,” said Gov. Lujan Grisham.
“I think that’s crazy,” said Albuquerque local Jacqueline Martin. “We’re all adults, we don’t need someone telling us what to and how to act.”
Albuquerque locals are split on the Governor’s announcement.
“It is tough, there’s not a silver bullet for this,” said Albuquerque local Mike Graham Delarosa. “It takes us coming together as a community to make sure this happens, to make sure the numbers go down.”
The state is reminding people you can report noncompliant businesses, mass gatherings and other health order violations to the state hotline. It’s received more than 1,000 complaints in just the first two weeks of this month. The governor is reminding everyone to mask up with officials estimating only half of New Mexicans are wearing masks.
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