‘Doing nothing is not an option’: Orange County mayor urges residents wear masks after Orange County, state sees uptick in COVID-19 cases

ORLANDO, Fla. — Florida health officials reported 1,758 new cases of COVID-19 in the state Monday.

The state’s total case numbers have now reached 77,326 with 2,938 deaths.

Watch our in-depth coverage below:

The state reported seven new deaths, including one in Volusia County.

Overnight, Orange County reported the largest case increase in Central Florida, adding 152 new cases. Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings said in a news conference Monday that the community needs to commit to social distancing and wearing masks to stop that number from rising.

“Doing nothing is not an option,” he said.

Demings said the county has noticed an uptick in cases coming from local bars and nightclubs and said if numbers continue to trend upward, the county may look into requiring masks in certain situations. He said he is speaking with his legal team to see if he can require people to wear masks at certain businesses.

READ: Altamonte Springs bar closes after customers test positive for COVID-19

Mackenzie Castor, an Orlando resident, said she doesn’t wear a mask.

“Until I show any symptoms at all, I just feel like I don’t want to be that person to wear a mask and scare people that I have it because I really have not symptoms of it,” she said.

James Gay said he doesn’t wear a mask because he likes to smile at people.

“A smile can go a long way. So to take that away, I’ll risk it I guess,” he said.

As for if he’d considering slowing down reopening efforts, Demings said, “We’re not there yet. That’s why we’re coming to our residents today and saying that we need all of their help to avoid that becoming a greater probability.”

He said he’ll have to strongly consider it if we continue to see triple-digit daily increases in new cases.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said that he attributes the uptick in cases to increased testing as Florida saw about 4,000 new cases over the weekend.

“We’re doing three times as many tests per day now as we did at the end of March," DeSantis said.

Florida officials said the good news is that hospitals still have capacity and it seems the death rate isn’t spiking.

See a full breakdown of the latest case numbers by county below:

INTERACTIVE MAP: Coronavirus cases in Florida

Orange: 3,282 (152 new cases)

Osceola: 840 (10 new cases)

Seminole: 790 (31 new cases)

Volusia: 946 (18 new cases)

Brevard: 565 (20 new cases)

Flagler: 207 (no change since yesterday)

Lake: 482 (18 new cases)

Marion: 315 (four new cases)

Sumter: 267 (one new case)

Polk: 1,509 (43 new cases)

Read: Coronavirus checklist: 100-plus disinfectants that may kill coronavirus on surfaces

Stay tuned to Channel 9 Eyewitness News for continuing updates.

Christopher Boyce, WFTV.com

Christopher Boyce joined WFTV in January of 2019.

Sarah Wilson

Sarah Wilson, WFTV.com

Sarah Wilson joined WFTV Channel 9 in 2018 as a digital producer after working as an award-winning newspaper reporter for nearly a decade in various communities across Central Florida.

Shannon Butler

Shannon Butler, WFTV.com

Shannon joined the Eyewitness News team in 2013.

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