BLOG: Coronavirus updates from Thursday, March 19

Posted at 11:07 AM, Mar 19, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-20 09:16:21-04

FLORIDA – ABC Action News is committed to providing Tampa Bay area residents all of the updates on the coronavirus, COVID-19, and the impact it's having on our way of life. To help you stay on top of it all, we've compiled all the updates for Thursday, March 19. For today's updates, visit Don't forget we are in this together!

10:23 p.m.
A Walgreens employee at a Seminole location tests positive.

8:51 p.m.
A University of Central Florida student tests positive for coronavirus.

6:34 p.m.
Florida now at 432 positive COVID-19 cases in the state, according to the Department of Health.

4:28 PM
Pinellas County votes to close all beaches, public beach parking amid coronavirus concerns

4:24 PM
BayCare Health System is postponing elective surgical procedures starting Friday, March 20 through April 30 to serve the public’s health amid the novel coronavirus pandemic.

4:00 PM
The U.S. State Department issues a level 4 travel advisory, warning Americans to avoid all international travel.

3:45 PM
HART announces temporary reduction of service hours on the TECO Line Streetcar

3:15 PM
Officials announce all Manatee County public beaches will close at 6 a.m. Friday. All Sarasota County beaches will close at 6 a.m. Saturday.

2:30 PM
Italy surpasses China in COVID-19-related deaths, death toll now above 3,400

2:15 PM
Governor Ron DeSantis announces thousands of swabs for coronavirus testing are on the way.

1:12 PM
All beaches in the City of Anna Maria will be closed effective 6 a.m. Friday 3/20/20 until further notice.

12:30 PM
President Trump, FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn announce officials are looking into two already approved drugs to treat COVID-19.

12:04 PM
Publix designates Tuesday and Wednesday mornings, 7 to 8 a.m., as senior shopping hours for customers age 65 and over.

11:15 AM
Florida at nearly 400 cases of coronavirus after Florida Department of Health reports 62 new positive cases.

10:30 AM
All JCPenney stores will close beginning at 7 p.m. Thursday and will remain closed through April 2.

10:00 AM
Labor Department says unemployment claims rose by 70,000 last week.

9:01 AM
The Home Depot announces they will close all stores at 6 p.m. daily

9:00 AM
Stocks are opening with modest losses on Wall Street, a break from recent wild swings over recession worries; Dow off 1%.

6:00 AM
Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister announced the release of 164 "low level, nonviolent" offenders from county jails.

"It is my hope that these individuals will make the most of this opportunity to be with their loved ones, help them prepare, comfort them and quarantine with them," Chronister said. "We cannot risk unnecessarily exposing our deputies to this virus."


Important updates from Wednesday, March 18


Important updates from Tuesday, March 17