U.S. Louisiana to tighten COVID-19 restrictions ahead of holiday

By Gao Lu

HOUSTON, Nov. 24 (Xinhua) -- U.S. state of Louisiana will tighten its COVID-19 restrictions before the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday, governor John Bel Edwards announced on Tuesday.

During a news conference, the governor said Louisiana will go back to a "revised phase 2" starting on Wednesday, to curb the recent surge of COVID-19. The phase will stay in effect for 28 days.

The "Revised Phase 2" restrictions include restaurants and non-essential retail limited to 50 percent capacity, families asked not to gather with people from outside households, among others.

The announcement came after weeks of climbing coronavirus cases in the U.S. southern state, with a significant surge in new cases in November.

The number of patients in hospitals has also far surpassed where they were on Sept. 11, when the state first entered phase 3, according to the media reports.

"Louisiana is experiencing a third surge of COVID-19. With the continued rise in cases and hospitalizations, we have reason to worry and to make necessary changes in how we are battling this virus," the governor tweeted after the news conference.

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