A new Gallup poll released Tuesday found that 72% of American adults are now practicing social distancing, including avoiding going into public places like stores and restaruants.
Just last week even after Trump’s March 13 national ‘state of emergency’ declaration, it was 54% that said at the time they were putting the same measures into place. The largest category answering in the affirmative in this newest Gallup survey is among those who say they are avoiding large crowds as well as mass transit, at a whopping 92%.
And in what’s already being felt as a stunning blow to the aviation industry which stands on the brink of perhaps temporarily shutting down altogether, 87% are avoiding all air and other travel involving crowded transit venues.
More Americans are this week are even avoiding small gatherings among their own family and friends: at 68% of those surveyed this week compared to 46% last week.
The data suggests the majority of the US public is implementing federal, state, and local guidelines related to social distancing, also as more and more cities and counties issue ‘shelter in place’ emergencies.
According to NY Times numbers, at least 167 million people in 17 states, 18 counties, and 10 cities have been ordered by local or state authorities to stay home except for essential travel like going to the doctor or grocery store.
Gallup summarizes of its findings compared to last week:
Even larger percentages of Americans are avoiding events with large crowds (92%) and are staying away from air travel or mass transit (87%). Most Americans were already avoiding these activities last week as businesses en masse began shuttering their doors, and widespread government and corporate travel bans took hold.
Another category in the survey attempted to gauge those who say they are either completely or “mostly” isolating themselves — this is at 64% compared to 53% last week.
Alarmingly, the United States now has the third highest number of infected in the world behind China and Italy, at 69,684 cases of the virus, expected to be at 70,000 by Friday, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.