Americans came to beaches and lakes on Memorial Day weekend and have often violated the restrictions imposed on the coronavirus outbreak.
In Florida, state police dissolved an unauthorized gathering of hundreds of people in Daytona Beach on Saturday.
In Missouri, the bars at Lake of the Ozarks were full of revelers who violated the rules of social distance.
The head of the U.S. Coronavirus Task Force, Dr. Deborah Birx said she was “very concerned” after seeing such scenes.
“We really always want to make it clear that social distance is absolutely critical. And if you can’t do social distance and are outside, you have to wear a mask,” said Dr. Birx on Sunday in ABC’s This Week.
Lyda Krewson, Mayor of St. Louis, Missouri, said: “It is irresponsible and dangerous to engage in such risky behavior just to enjoy the extended vacation weekend.
“Now these people will return to S. Louis and counties in Missouri and the Midwest and raise concerns about the potential for more positive cases, hospitalizations and tragic deaths. Deeply worrying.”
In Florida’s Tampa neighborhood, the crowd was so large that authorities closed the parking lot because it was full, the Associated Press reports.
In California, many people were seen on the beaches at the weekend. State officials said most people covered their faces and kept their distance from beaches and parks.
Memorial Day – an annual holiday on the last Monday in May – honors those who died in the U.S. military. It marks the unofficial start of summer.
There are more coronavirus cases in the United States than anywhere else in the world. It has over 1.6 million known infections and is nearing 100,000 virus-related deaths.
All 50 US states have now partially reopened after being closed for two months. However, the remaining restrictions vary across the country.
There are still large differences between countries in terms of infection rates and the pace of their economic restart.
Some of the hardest hit areas, including New York, New Jersey, and Washington State, are currently experiencing the greatest declines, while the majority of states have reached plateaus.