2nd Mexican state goes to highest COVID-19 alert, lockdown

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A second of Mexico's 32 states returned to the country's highest level of alert and lockdown Tuesday after a rebound in coronavirus cases.

The state government of Durango announced that nonessential activities would be banned and parks, gyms, pools and schools will be closed.

The alert also imposes a 25% capacity limit on restaurants and hotels. The move came after cases in the northern state spiked to almost three times the number seen over the summer, and 68% of hospital beds were full.

The state of 1.7 million people has confirmed almost 15,000 cases and 873 deaths so far, though testing has been very limited. Another northern state, Chihuahua, became the first to return to red alert in late October.

A handful of states in Mexico have seen dizzying rises in case numbers in recent weeks, including Aguascalientes, Coahuila, Queretaro and Zacatecas. Some other where the virus originally struck hard, like Baja California, the State of Mexico and Guerrero, have seen case numbers decline.

Nationwide, Mexico has seen 933,155 test-confirmed cases and 92,100 deaths, though the government estimates the real toll is probably around 140,000.

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