Florida recorded 216 coronavirus deaths on Wednesday, setting another record as one of the pandemic hot spots in the US.
The new toll shattered a record set just on Tuesday with 186 fatalities, and the overall death toll from the pandemic in Florida is now 6,333, the state health department said.
The number of new cases of COVID-19 reported Wednesday was 9,446, down slightly from the daily total of around 10,000 that has been the norm for weeks.
A total of 451,423 people have been infected with the virus in the Sunshine State, which has a population of 21 million.
Florida recently overtook New York in terms of total caseload and is now second only to California, which has a population twice that of Florida.
A quarter of all of Florida’s cases are in Miami.
Nationwide, the US death toll now passes 150,000, says Johns Hopkins University.
The world’s worst-hit country announced its first coronavirus-related death at the end of February, and has now recorded more than 4.38 million total cases, the Baltimore-based university reported Wednesday.
The approval rating of Republican Governor Ron DeSantis has fallen dramatically over the past month over his handling of the crisis.
Back in May he bragged that he had managed to control the pandemic, in a speech in which he accused the media of spreading panic.
DeSantis, an ally of President Donald Trump, has refused to make mask-wearing obligatory state wide, although some mayors have.
Florida, which charges no sales tax and lives off tourism, scrambled to bring back visitors in May and June as its economy tanked under lockdown measures and it seemed the pandemic was under control.