U.S. Covid cases lowest in a year as Memorial Day travel picks up

A crowd of travelers are checking in for their flights in LAX on Friday, May 28, 2021.

Allen J. Cockroaches | Los Angeles Times | Getty Images

The U.S. has reported the lowest number of Covid-19 cases in more than a year as the country’s airports recorded the highest number of travelers since the pandemic began over the weekend of Memorial Day.

The 11,976 new cases reported on May 29 were the lowest since March 23, 2020, when 11,238 new cases were reported, according to Johns Hopkins University.

The seven-day average of 21,007 is the lowest since March 31 last year when it was 19,363.

On Friday, the TSA also reported the highest number of travelers since the pandemic began. More than 1.9 million people went to heaven for the long weekend. At the same time last year, the TSA counted only 327,000 passengers at its checkpoints.

The World Health Organization officially declared Covid-19 a global pandemic on March 11, 2020. The US reported 1,147 Covid cases that day. The pandemic would infect more than 33 million people in the United States and kill nearly 600,000 people.

Within a week of the WHO’s statement, daily TSA trips dropped from 1.7 million to 620,000. As of March 25, the number was 203,000. Since March 11, 2021, the daily number of fliers has remained above 1 million.

More than 60% of adults in the US have at least one dose of a Covid vaccine, while 40.5% of adults are fully vaccinated, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. President Biden announced earlier this month that his government plans to increase the number of adults on at least one dose to 70% by July 4th. He also said he plans to fully vaccinate 160 million American adults by the same date.

“If we succeed in these efforts,” said Biden during his announcement, “then the Americans will have taken a serious step towards a return to normal.”

The CDC recently said that fully vaccinated people do not need to wear masks in most settings, although masks are still required on airplanes, buses, trains and public transit. Cities across the country are lifting restrictions on indoor dining and gatherings as cases fall and vaccinations increase.

The Chief Medical Officer of the White House, Dr. Anthony Fauci, has repeatedly stated that he wants the daily case numbers to fall below 10,000 before a major relaxation of security measures takes place.

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