Virus deaths surging in California, now top 30,000

SACRAMENTO, CALIFORNIA (AP) – The coronavirus death toll in California reached 30,000 on Monday, another staggering milestone as the nation’s most populous state endures the worst surge of the nearly year-long pandemic.

Newly confirmed infections are rising at a dizzying rate of more than a quarter-million a week and during the weekend a record 1,163 deaths were reported.

Los Angeles County is one of the epicentres and health officials there are telling residents to wear a mask even when at home if they go outside regularly and live with someone elderly or otherwise at high risk.

“The damaging impact to our families and local hospitals from this surge is the worst disaster our county has experienced for decades,” Health Director Barbara Ferrer said.

People wait in cars for a vaccination against the coronavirus at a new vaccination superstation in San Diego. PHOTO: AP