Texas, the second-largest U.S. state, is pausing its reopening plan as coronavirus cases rise, Gov. Greg Abbott announced Thursday.
Businesses that are currently allowed to be open may remain open, according to Abbott.
“The last thing we want to do as a state is go backwards and close down businesses,” the governor said in a statement. “This temporary pause will help our state corral the spread until we can safely enter the next phase of opening our state for business.”
The state announced an all-time high of 5,551 new COVID-19 cases Wednesday. Hospitalizations there have set record highs for 13 straight days.
Visitors wearing masks to protect against the spread of COVID-19 pose for photos at the Alamo, which remains closed, in San Antonio, Wednesday, June 24, 2020. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)
Abbott urged Texans to wear a mask, wash their hands and practice social distancing.
“The more that we all follow these guidelines, the safer our state will be and the more we can open up Texas for business,” he said.
Investors have been eyeing virus hotspots in the South and West, with states like Arizona, California, Mississippi and Nevada joining Texas in setting single-day records.
New York, New Jersey and Connecticut on Thursday began requiring visitors from Texas and eight other states to self-isolate for 14 days.
White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow told FOX Business on Thursday that shutdowns could return in some parts of the country.
“There are spikes in hot spots. There’s no doubt about that,” Kudlow said during an interview on “Mornings with Maria.” “And there will be shutdowns in individual places or certain stores. We are keeping a very close eye on this.”