Coronavirus: US surpasses 12 million COVID-19 cases, John Hopkins tally shows

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US surpassed on Sunday 12 million coronavirus cases, according to the Johns Hopkins tally.

The world's largest economy currently has 12,019,960 cases and 255,414 deaths, both by far the worst global tolls. The new toll comes just six days after the US crossed the 11-million case threshold.

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The globally tally stood at 57,898,891 COVID-19 cases and 1,377,978 deaths.

Millions of people in the United States were expected to travel for the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday, ignoring warnings from health officials about furthering the spread of COVID-19.

More than one million people flew through US airports on Friday, according to data from the Transportation Security Administration. That made it the second-heaviest domestic air traffic day since the start of the pandemic, despite pleas from health officials for Americans to stay home and stop the spread of the virus.

"This is the 2nd time since the pandemic passenger volume has surpassed 1 million," TSA spokeswoman Lisa Farbstein wrote on Twitter on Saturday.

Friday marked another milestone in the United States as the highest number of new COVID-19 cases was reported - 196,815 infections in a day.

Health officials have warned that the burgeoning wave of infections could soon overwhelm the healthcare system if people do not follow public health guidance, particularly around not traveling and mingling with other households for Thursday's traditional Thanksgiving celebration.

The number of Thanksgiving air travelers was expected to decline by 47.5 percent from 2019, but 2.4 million people were forecast to take to the skies, according to a report earlier this month from the American Automobile Association. It said the number traveling by car was expected to fall by only about 4 percent.

The US Centers for Disease Control has issued a "strong recommendation" to Americans to refrain from all kinds of travel over Thanksgiving.

"We're alarmed with the exponential increase in cases, hospitalizations, and deaths," CDC official Henry Walke told reporters on Thursday.

- With Reuters

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