Governor extends closure of roads in city near Navajo Nation

By – Associated Press – Sunday, May 3, 2020

GALLUP, N.M. (AP) – Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham extended to Thursday the closure of all roads to nonessential traffic in Gallup, one of the largest communities bordering the Navajo Nation, where a surging coronavirus outbreak has already prompted widespread restrictions and weekend lockdowns.

Lujan Grisham’s extension of the order, which was issued Sunday, also required that businesses in Gallup close from 5 p.m. to 8 a.m. in the city of about 20,000 people along Interstate 40, which remained open to through traffic.

Gallup Mayor Louis Bonaguidi asked the governor to extend the order, which Lujan Grisham first issued on Friday.

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“Only through the extension of the invocation of your authority under the Riot Control Act can our community impose the measures necessary to stem transmission of COVID-19,” Bonaguidi wrote to the governor.

Also on Sunday, health officials reported 12 more coronavirus-related deaths in New Mexico, pushing the state total to 152.

They also said New Mexico had 118 new positive COVID-19 tests since Saturday’s numbers were announcing, increasing the state total to 3,850 cases.

Due to a technical lapse, reporting results from some labs to the state Department of Health were delayed Sunday.

As a result, the data reflects only a partial total and the delayed results will be included in the state’s reporting Monday as soon as they are received and lab-confirmed.

Of the 12 reported deaths, five were elderly residents of a Farmington life care center and four of them were women. All five had underlying medical conditions.

Authorities say there were two deaths reported in Bernalillo and Sandoval counties and one in McKinley, San Juan and Valencia counties.

Of the 3,850 coronavirus cases statewide, authorities say 1,144 have been in McKinley County and 920 in Bernalillo County, the state’s most populous that includes the Albuquerque metro area.

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