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'Momentous day' -New York lifts Covid restrictions

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“What New York has done is extraordinary. We went from literally worst to first.”

Governor Andrew Cuomo on Tuesday congratulated the state on reaching a crucial milestone:

He reported that 70% of New York adults have received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine… greatly reducing the infection rate.

Which is why, Cuomo said, the stringent mandates put in place after New York’s traumatic first wave of COVID-19 were no longer necessary.

“The state mandates that have proven right and correct and brought us through this pandemic are relaxed as of today, effective immediately.”

While safety precautions are still required on public transit and in healthcare settings, Cuomo said most social gathering restrictions, capacity restrictions, health screenings and disinfection protocols are over.

It’s a ‘momentous day’, said Cuomo, in the state’s fight against the virus.

“You know who beat covid? The people of New York beat covid.” (Flash) "New York State has fully vaccinated a larger share of adults than any other big state in the country.”

States initially hardest hit are now reopening, after aggressive vaccination campaigns.

New York joined California, where restrictions including physical distancing, mask mandates and capacity limits on many businesses ended on Tuesday.

Fireworks all across New York were set to mark Tuesday's milestone, and state landmarks like the Empire State Building were to be lit in blue and gold - the state’s colors - to honor essential workers.

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