Return to Transcripts main page


WHO Warns Of Second Peak Before A Second Wave In Autumn; Crowds Flock To Alabama Beaches On Holiday Weekend; U.K. Retail Stores Set To Reopen As Government Relaxes Restrictions. Aired 5:30-6a ET

Aired May 26, 2020 - 05:30   ET




DR. MIKE RYAN, HEALTH EMERGENCIES PROGRAMME, WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION: We need to be also cognizant of the fact that the disease can jump up at any time. We cannot make assumptions that just because the disease is on the way down now that's it's on -- it's on -- it's going to keep going down and that we're going to get a number of months to get ready for a second wave. We may get a second peak in this wave.


LAURA JARRETT, CNN ANCHOR: At least one southern state says it's already in the middle of its second peak.

CNN's Ed Lavandera has the latest from Little Rock.


ED LAVANDERA, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (on camera): Christine and Laura, the state of Arkansas has reported a little more than 6,000 coronavirus cases since the pandemic started, and what is striking is that roughly 1,000 of those have come in just the last five days.

And that is why the governor here is describing what they're seeing as the second peak of the coronavirus pandemic here in Arkansas. The first came just a little more than a month ago.

The state is well into the reopening phase of the economy here and you can see and get the sense from most people that they're unfazed by what is happening.

If you look at the images that have come from lakes in the area over this Memorial Day weekend -- thousands of people at Lake Hamilton, for instance. One woman there said that they're not living in fear -- that they're embracing this moment -- and that is why health experts are a little bit concerned.

I can tell you that when you drive around town here in Little Rock and some other places that we've been, we have seen virtually no one wearing a mask. But the governor here says that the silver lining is that there is a

low positive infection rate and there's a low hospitalization rate. And he contributes the increase in the number of new cases being reported now to better testing.

Christine and Laura.


CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN ANCHOR: All right, Ed, thank you for that.

Alabama is one of 18 states where coronavirus cases are rising. Still, Alabama's beaches were jammed with people over the holiday weekend against all scientific evidence that human behavior is the only tool we have today to stop the spread of the virus. Coronavirus appears to be the last thing on their minds.

CNN's Gary Tuchman has more.


GARY TUCHMAN, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Coronavirus cases in Alabama are going the wrong way -- they are trending up -- but the state is now wide open for business.

Social distancing is the state's rule but that effort has often been an exercise in futility at restaurants and bars in the beach towns of Alabama this Memorial Day weekend as people come back to party. At this restaurant and bar in Gulf Shores, Alabama, many wonder why it took this long to open.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm just here just to have fun and meet everybody and be cool, you know.

TUCHMAN (voice-over): Across the street, the beach is jammed. Groups are supposed to be six feet away from each other and police work to enforce that. The groups are also ordered to only consist of people who live in the same household. There is no active effort to enforce that.

Mindy Carr (ph) is 21. She just graduated from college.

MINDY CARR, ALABAMA BEACHGOER: I mean, everybody's got to go somehow. You know what I mean?

TUCHMAN (on camera): You mean die?

CARR: Yes. But in a way, like -- I mean, I don't want to die but I mean, if that's what God has in store for my life then that's OK.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: My family has the same mindset as me and we kind of just agreed that if we get it, we get it. We're going to handle it as a family and just get over it because that's what family does.

TUCHMAN (on camera): When it comes to coronavirus, medical experts will tell you they're very concerned about the immediate future here in Alabama. On this beach, though, your eyes and ears will tell you something much different.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's just like the flu, right?

TUCHMAN (on camera): Well, it's not just like the flu.


TUCHMAN (on camera): It's far more contagious --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Well, I know, but people die from --

TUCHMAN (on camera): -- and far more deadly.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: -- the flu also.

TUCHMAN (on camera): They do die from the flu.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So to me, that's just the way I look at it.

TUCHMAN (on camera): Do you have any concerns about being at the beach with so many people with your children?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Not at all. Not at all.

TUCHMAN (on camera): How come you're not worried at all that someone could be sick and walk by you and get you sick?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Because it's -- there's enough wind and air that it's going to clear it all out of here.

TUCHMAN (on camera): But the wind and the air don't clear it away.


TUCHMAN (on camera): There's no proof of anything like that. There's wind and air everywhere in this world.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Right, yes. No, I'm not worried about it at all.

TUCHMAN (voice-over): And then there is the issue of masks. We saw a grand total of zero being worn on the beach.

TUCHMAN (on camera): Do you ever wear a mask?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No. My wife and kids do, I don't.

TUCHMAN (on camera): How come you don't?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I just feel comfortable that I'm going to be OK.

TUCHMAN (on camera): But the mask isn't to keep you OK, it's to keep your wife and kids OK. To protect them.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I get it, I get it. The survival rate is so high, I think --

TUCHMAN (on camera): You're not worried about them getting sick because they're going to live?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I -- we're all going to get sick for something, eventually.

TUCHMAN (voice-over): President Trump is part of this conversation.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I mean, if he's not wearing a mask I'm not going to wear a mask. If he's not worried I'm not worried.

TUCHMAN (on camera): The president?


TUCHMAN (voice-over): Speaking of masks, Alabama has mandated them for restaurant and bar workers. Some restaurants have them, but at others when we arrived unannounced and shot cell phone video, employees were not wearing masks. The manager here telling us after our visit he has now given masks to his employees with instructions to wear them.

At this other restaurant-bar where we also saw no employees wearing masks, the manager told us they will continue not wearing them because she wants it that way despite violating the state order.


Traffic very heavy in Alabama's beach towns. All nearby hotels sold out as the holiday weekend began. Alabama is back in business, Covid surge or not.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: When it's my time to go it's just my time to go.

TUCHMAN (on camera): And the police departments throughout the state of Alabama have the authority to make arrests based on reopening orders. Here in Gulf Shores, Alabama we are being told by a police department spokesman that no arrests pertaining to those orders were made over this Memorial Day weekend. We did talk to a police officer on the beat, though, who said that several warnings were issued.

The fact is during this time it's a very unpleasant thing to do to have to make arrests like that. But it's very easy to find restaurants and bars here on the beach in Alabama where the employees and the bartenders are not wearing masks.



ROMANS: So revealing from Gary Tuchman in that piece. I mean, we only know -- we only have one tool, right, and that is our own behavior to help stop the spread of this -- of this virus.

JARRETT: And look, plenty of people are, I think, doing the right thing. You know, plenty of people are wearing masks. But that piece just shows you that the message just hasn't been received in other places. ROMANS: Yes.

JARRETT: And people think you know what, if I get it, so be it -- but it's actually really deadly.

ROMANS: It's just -- I'm shocked.


ROMANS: Thank you, Gary for that piece.

JARRETT: Yes, it's just jaw-dropping.

Well, still ahead, hopes for herd immunity in Sweden are not going as planned there. That story coming next.



ROMANS: Retail businesses in the U.K. are set to spring back to life. Thousands of stores will begin reopening in mid-June as part of phase two in the government's plan to ease lockdown restrictions.

CNN's Anna Stewart is live for us in London with more. What's it going to look like, Anna?

ANNA STEWART, CNN REPORTER: Oh, I think it will look quite different, Christine. We've all been looking forward to this moment for weeks but what will it really look like?

So initially, on Monday, we'll see some car showrooms and some open markets -- they will start reopening. We already have garden centers in the U.K. open at the moment and fairly no risk. Then we're going to get the non-essential shops. So we're talking about department stores, shoe shops, book shops.

And the government says that these businesses, up until this point, need to start making up their risk assessments and publishing them. They've published some guidance on their Web site for retailers to have a look at.

So, for instance, queues inside-outside shops. Those will need to be maintained to ensure there is a two-meter distance between customers and, of course, staff as well to keep them all safe. Things like changing rooms in clothes shops. We don't expect those to be open anytime soon.

And there are lots of really quite costly measures, I guess, for businesses. For instance, if you return an item, the item will be quarantined within the store for 72 hours before it can go back on the shelves. So lots of measures like that, that businesses will have to get their heads around.

Also, just because of lockdown lifts and some of these shops can reopen, for those business owners it will be really tricky to work out what level of staffing they need and what sort of opening hours they can sustain. Because footfall, frankly, will not go back to pre- pandemic normals for weeks, months, possibly even years depending on which sector we're looking at. So it will be a big adjustment phase.

Things that aren't reopening yet, at least until July, pubs, restaurants, beauty salons, and the one I miss the most, Christine, the hairdresser.

ROMANS: Oh, yes, we all need a haircut -- this is true. But you look wonderful.

Thank you so much, Anna. Thank you -- Laura.

JARRETT: Well, Japan has now completely lifted its state of emergency. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announcing the government has eased restrictions in the last five of its regions, including Tokyo and the surrounding areas.

Japan imposed the state of emergency after a surge of coronavirus cases last month which, at one point, topped 1,000 cases a day. But the numbers have now tapered off and restrictions have been lifted piecemeal. New cases are now in the dozens at most. Some good news there.

ROMANS: Sweden's decision not to lock down the country has not created herd immunity as hoped. Coronavirus deaths have now surpassed 4,000. Unlike its Nordic neighbors, Sweden decided against imposing mandatory restrictions, allowing businesses and schools to stay open despite the spread of Covid-19. Now, the government's controversial approach has, so far, failed to produce widespread immunity.

A study by Sweden's chief epidemiologist reveals just over seven percent of Stockholm residents have developed the antibodies needed to fight coronavirus.

JARRETT: That's interesting.

We're going to take you to a place where anyone who wants a coronavirus test can get one. Stay with us.


JOHN DEFTERIOS, CNN BUSINESS EMERGING MARKETS EDITOR AND ANCHOR (voice-over): Japan is home to the world's third-largest geothermal reserves after the United States and Indonesia, and technological know-how in geothermal largely comes from the East Asian country. Still, adoption of this energy source has been slow to gather steam domestically.

TATSUYA WAKEYAMA, RENEWABLE ENERGY INSTITUTE (through translator): Because of the limited land and weather conditions it's difficult to achieve a significant supply of renewable energy with just one source.

The advantage of geothermal is that it can generate power at a constant output unlike solar and wind power whose output fluctuates depending on the weather. DEFTERIOS (voice-over): Wakeyama says Japan sits on 20 gigawatts of

potential geothermal energy but is currently using just 500 megawatts, two percent of its capacity.


John Defterios, CNN.



JARRETT: Welcome back.

As Denmark begins to reopen the country, government health officials are pushing for the entire population there to be tested. They now say anyone who wants a coronavirus test can get one and they're making it happen.

CNN's Fred Pleitgen has more.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Encourage and support us.


FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice- over): It was a big promise President Trump made in early March -- coronavirus tests for anyone who wants them.

TRUMP: Anybody that wants a test can get a test.

PLEITGEN (voice-over): A promise the president has not fulfilled to this day.

But now, tiny Denmark is making exactly that possible. People are flocking to tent centers in Copenhagen and other towns.


Sarah Wiese lives in a shared apartment and says she wants to make sure she's not jeopardizing her flatmates.

SARAH WIESE, COPENHAGEN RESIDENT: (INAUDIBLE) so we can -- if I have it that I can tell my friends because we have been a little bit close -- too close (laughing).

PLEITGEN (voice-over): The process is simple. Make an appointment via an app and head to the nearest testing facility. The average waiting time to get an appointment, Denmark's Health Ministry says, is less than a day. There's even a drive-in facility where motorists get tested in their cars.

HELLE HOESTRUP, TEST CENTER LEADER: We're testing a lot -- lots of people in Denmark just to be wiser. To learn about how the virus is spreading.

PLEITGEN (voice-over): Denmark is seen as a role model for the way it's combating the coronavirus in Europe. It shut down very early and its death toll remains low. But the country only recently started mass corona tests to test both the presence of the virus or the antibodies showing a previous infection.

Now anyone, whether they have symptoms or not, can get tested. That's to make sure there's no pockets of the virus left, Denmark's health minister tells me.

MAGNUS HEUNICKE, DANISH HEALTH MINISTER: We are really chasing the last pockets and it is important for us to find them and then to really stop the spread of the virus.

PLEITGEN (voice-over): With a population of less than six million, Denmark says it easily has the capacity to test anyone who wants to be tested. The Health Ministry says the broad testing scheme is part of a larger push to gradually open up the country after beating back the virus.

Fred Pleitgen, CNN, Copenhagen, Denmark.


ROMANS: Yes, so many say reopening is not possible without widespread testing.

Let's get a check on CNN Business this morning. Taking a look at markets around the world, you can see that Asian shares closed higher and European shares opened nicely higher here.

On Wall Street, a big bounce expected this morning. There is optimism about reopening. Some would say maybe unjustified optimism but optimism nonetheless.

The New York Stock Exchange will reopen its iconic trading floor to a small number of brokers today. Traders must wear masks and stick to strict social distancing rules.

Another blow to the global travel industry. LATAM, Latin America's largest airline, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy Tuesday. That's the second major airline in the region to file in May.

Now, this reorganization will include its affiliates in Chile, Peru, Colombia, Ecuador, and the U.S. LATAM says the bankruptcy will not affect reservations, employee pay, or flight vouchers.

And, Uber is laying off 600 people in India as part of its latest round of job cuts. It's shedding 6,700 jobs globally as it deals with the pressure the pandemic has put on its core business. The epicenter of this, really, is travel.

Virgin Orbit's demo of its orbital rocket didn't go as planned Monday. The launch would have seen the rocket ignite its engine midair for the first time. Instead, it experienced an anomaly and the mission was safely terminated. A spokesperson said the rocket fell into the ocean.

Virgin Orbit wants to fire satellites into orbit using rockets that launch midair from under the wing of a plane. The company did not respond to further requests for comment.

JARRETT: Well, just how hungry are Americans for sports? An average 5.8 million viewers watched Champions for Charity on Sunday on Turner Sports and that makes the event -- headlined by Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Peyton Manning, and Tom Brady -- the most-watched golf telecast in the history of cable T.V. It also raised -- oh, by the way -- $20 million to benefit Covid-19 relief efforts.

ROMANS: A golf clap for them.

All right, NBA great and current Georgetown basketball coach Patrick Ewing is recovering at home after testing positive for coronavirus. He returned home after a brief stay at a Washington, D.C. hospital. Ewing's son said in a tweet Monday his father is doing better. The 57- year-old Ewing announced his positive diagnosis on Twitter last Friday.

JARRETT: And we wish him well.

ROMANS: We do.

JARRETT: He's the big man for the Cleveland Cavaliers and he also happens to be a very big tipper. Andre Drummond leaving a $1,000 tip for a Florida waitress, Kassandra Diaz. The entire check was only for $164.00.

Diaz said she cried tears of joy then posted a picture of the check on Instagram. Drummond saw it and then replied thank you for being amazing.

ROMANS: A little kindness can go a long way. A thousand dollars' worth of kindness really goes far.

JARRETT: You know what, every little bit helps right now.

ROMANS: Yes, good news.

All right, thanks for joining us this Tuesday morning. I'm Christine Romans.

JARRETT: I'm Laura Jarrett. "NEW DAY" is next.




RYAN: We cannot make assumptions. We may get a second peak in this wave.

KYUNG LAH, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Crowds apparent as a cooped-up country reopens. Data shows more states are heading in the wrong direction.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Anyone who is involved this weekend in any sort of crowded event should just self-quarantine.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It gives me pause to think about what we may see the next week or two when people get back to their communities from vacation down on the Gulf Coast.

ELIZABETH COHEN, CNN SENIOR MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: This is now the 10th team that's in human clinical trials trying out their experimental Covid vaccines.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The world, basically, is going to have to vaccinate its way out of this pandemic and I think the standard way of doing it is just too slow.


ANNOUNCER: This is NEW DAY with Alisyn Camerota and John Berman.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Welcome to our viewers in the United States and all around the world. This is NEW DAY. It's Tuesday, May 26th, 6:00 here in New York.

And this morning an important marker. The city that saw the first real coronavirus outbreak on the east coast, the original hotspot here, begins phased reopening.