Surging COVID-19 cases force Tijuana into most restrictive tier before Christmas

Posted at 4:22 PM, Dec 10, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-10 21:59:54-05

Tijuana, B.C. (KGTV) — As Christmas approaches, decorations are up around Tijuana but much of the city has shut down.

According to ABC 10News’ media partner Televisa, the state of Baja California has had almost 27,000 COVID-19 cases and nearly 5,000 deaths since the start of the pandemic.

For comparison, San Diego County's had startling 97,549 cases but far fewer deaths. As of Thursday, 1,103 deaths had been reported.

On Thursday morning, ABC 10News spoke to Televisa anchor Estephania Báez about how hospital capacities across the border are maxed out, pulling the city out of its less restrictive orange tier and back into its most restrictive red tier. That hasn’t happened since the summer.

“The difference between now and then is that now people don't have fear with COVID-19 here and [people have] to go to work so they prefer to [become] positive rather than to lose a day of money,” she added.

Baez said there's concern over both apathies to wearing masks and resistance to any news of a vaccine.

“They don't even want to get vaccinated. We have heard in several places that people are afraid and they don't trust even the authorities,” she told ABC 10News.

Baja California's red tier restrictions are in place through at least Dec. 20, meaning widespread closures.

“That includes schools, gyms, spas, museums, pools, movie theaters, churches, and amusement parks,” said Baez.

Restaurants and hotels can operate at a very limited capacity.

Televisa also reports that the high cost of testing and limited locations to get testing done continues to be a deterrent for many people.