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Los Angeles mayor says the coronavirus is spreading within households rapidly

Ventilator tubes file photo
Posted at 3:57 PM, Jan 03, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-03 18:57:09-05

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The mayor of Los Angeles says the pandemic is getting worse as the coronavirus spreads rapidly within households and Californians let their guard down.

Mayor Eric Garcetti says LA County is recording a new COVID-19 case every six seconds. Garcetti said on the CBS program “Face the Nation” on Sunday that he’s concerned news of a vaccine rollout “has made everybody so hopeful” that they wrongly feel they can relax their behavior. He said they must stay vigilant.

California hospitals stretched to their limits will get help from the state's Fire and Rescue Mutual Aid System, which is usually used in response to wildfires, floods and other natural disasters.

Overall Los Angeles County is seeing high compliance of mask-wearing and people abiding by stay-home orders, Garcetti said. Despite that, the state is reporting enormous numbers of new cases, including more than 12,400 in Los Angeles County on Sunday.

More than 26,530 people have died from the virus in California, making it the third state to exceed 25,000 COVID-19 deaths since the start of the pandemic, behind New York and Texas.

The southern half of the state has seen the worst effects of the latest surge, from the agricultural San Joaquin Valley to the Mexico border.

Hospitals are swamped with patients and intensive care units don’t have any more beds for COVID-19 patients. Makeshift wards are being set up in tents, arenas, classrooms and conference rooms.