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Los Angeles is running out of oxygen

New reports suggest Los Angeles is running out of oxygen as COVID-19 cases soar in the state.

Pigeons gather on a red light on Hollywood Blvd., in Los Angeles Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2021. Los Angeles is the epicenter of California’s surge that is expected to get worse in coming weeks when another spike is expected after people traveled or gathered for Christmas and New Year’s.
Pigeons gather on a red light on Hollywood Blvd., in Los Angeles Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2021. Los Angeles is the epicenter of California’s surge that is expected to get worse in coming weeks when another spike is expected after people traveled or gathered for Christmas and New Year’s.
Damian Dovarganes, Associated Press

Los Angeles County is running out of oxygen due to an overwhelming number of COVID-19 cases in recent weeks.

What’s going on:

Los Angeles County has been running out of oxygen because of the spike in COVID-19 cases. Ambulance crews were told to not bring in any patients who had little hope of survival. Instead, the crews were told “to treat and declare such patients dead on the scene to preserve hospital capacity,” according to The Washington Post.

  • Los Angeles hospitals turned ambulances away “because they can’t provide the airflow needed to treat patients,” The Washington Post reports.

Los Angeles County ambulance crews were recently told not to transport patients who had little chance of survival, CNN reports.

  • “Hospitals are declaring internal disasters and having to open church gyms to serve as hospital units,” supervisor Hilda Solis said, per CNN.

What to do

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti told reporters recently there’s a new case of COVID-19 every six seconds in the county, and it’s spreading mainly through the home.

  • “This is something now that really is spreading in the home,” Garcetti said. “What’s happening in Los Angeles can and will be coming to many communities across America. If you get two households together for Christmas, if you went to a New Year’s gathering — even if it was people you know and love so you thought it was OK — that’s when this virus exploits that weakness and is going far.”

Garcetti said Americans need to take extra precautions now that the virus is spreading again.

  • “We cannot. We cannot let up,” the mayor said. “This is a virus that preys off of our weakness, preys off of our exhaustion.”