More than 15 million Americans traveled by air over the holidays

Many Americans traveled long distances despite advice from health experts to stay close to home.
3:05 | 01/04/21

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Transcript for More than 15 million Americans traveled by air over the holidays
Rachel, thank you. That political drama playing out amid the staggering surge of the coronavirus. More than 20 million Americans now testing positive. 1 of every 16 people in the U.S. The death toll reaching another painful milestone as well, more than 350,000 lives lost. And more than 123,000 covid patients starting to new year in the hospital. No holiday for the front line workers fighting to save their lives. And despite advice, more than 16 million people traveling by air this holiday season. Tonight, all that travel is raising fears that an even more troubling surge is yet to come. Here's Trevor Ault. Reporter: Tonight, millions on the move in the midst of a staggering coronavirus surge. The TSA screening more than 16 million people this holiday season, with today likely the busiest of the pandemic. In there are a lot of first-time flyers. Like, a lot. Reporter: Many returning from hot spots like Miami. Beaches there packed with partiers. These images showing massive pool parties that officials fear become super spreader events. The coronavirus doesn't much exist over here, honestly. Reporter: But this week, Florida reported record infections, part of a crushing 50,000 Americans reported dead in the past 19 days. The deaths are real deaths. All you need to do is go out into the trenches, go to the hospitals. Reporter: California funeral homes now renting refrigerators, as they are overwhelmed with six times the usual number of bodies. The state reporting 98,000 new cases this weekend. With more patients fighting the virus inhe hospital than ever before. We're still seeing the Thanksgiving numbers and that's really why it's so frightening. We haven't seen Christmas numbers yet. And we haven't seen new year's, for sure. Reporter: In Los Angeles, the mayor says a person gets infected every six seconds. And more young people with no pre-existing conditions are getting sick and dying. This will not only come for somebody that you love, it will possibly come for you. What is happening in Los Angeles can and will be coming to many communs across America. Reporter: Already in Massachusetts, dozens of cases have been linked to Christmas eve services at a single church. Even those who survive the virus could face a long road to recovery. I see a physical therapist twice a week. I tell everyone I caught the virus that keeps on giving. Reporter: This man fought back from near death in the hospital, but still has trouble breathing from lasting lung damage. It was very painful. And I don't think that people understand until it hits home. Reporter: Here in New York, we're starting to see some troubling numbers. Once again, it's the fourth state with 1 million confirmed infections. Just in New York City, there are 49 zip codes where the positivity rate has climbed above 10%. Trevor, thank you.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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