While you were sleeping, we compiled the biggest stories of the day in one place. Each story has a quick and easy summary, so you're prepared for whatever the day brings. Just click on the links if you want to know more!
1. Treasure Coast schools see drastic spike in coronavirus
Indian River County's Vero Beach High School ranked among the top ten in the state for its number of cases. According to the Florida Department of Health, 50 new cases were reported during the second quarter.
Other schools that saw an increase were Jensen Beach High which reported 21 cases and Ft. Pierce Central with 20 cases.
2. US sets daily record for coronavirus deaths, hospitalizations
More Americans reportedly died from the coronavirus in the last 24 hours than in any other single day during the pandemic. According to Johns Hopkins’ figures, 2,658 Americans died from the coronavirus on Wednesday, topping a record previously set in May.
Meanwhile, coronavirus hospitalizations in the US topped 100,000 on Wednesday according to the COVID Tracking Project, a mark that is well above the spring and summer surges of the coronavirus.
Florida's new coronavirus cases rose by 9,994 on Thursday. Deaths increased by 97 with the total toll including nonresidents passing 19,000, the Florida Health Department announced Wednesday.
3. When can we expect a vaccine? Not as soon as the UK, but soon
British officials have authorized a COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use, greenlighting the world’s first shot against the virus
Officials believe 20 million people in the U.S. will get first dose of vaccine by end of month. They project 100 million will be vaccinated by March. Former Presidents Barack Obama, George W. Bush and Bill Clinton are volunteering to get their Covid-19 vaccines on camera to promote public confidence in the vaccine's safety
So what is getting the vaccine like? Matt Sczesny chronicled his experiences participating in COVID-19 vaccine trial here.
4. The Latest On Election 2020: Georgia official warns against election allegations, Mark Kelly sworn in
Gabriel Sterling, the Georgia voting system implementation manager, said threats have come as President Trump continues making baseless allegations about the legitimacy of last month’s presidential election.
Sterling said that Trump has the right to contest the election in court, but added, “You need to step up and say this, is stop inspiring people to commit potential acts of violence. Someone's going to get hurt. Someone's going to get shot. Someone's going to get killed, and it's not right."
Democrats picked up a Senate seat on Wednesday when former astronaut Mark Kelly was sworn in as a US senator for Arizona after defeating Republican Sen. Martha McSally last month in a state Trump is contesting.
5. Trump fights Twitter, Biden proposes student loan forgiveness
Trump is threatening to veto a defense policy bill unless it ends protections for internet companies that shield them from being held liable for material posted by their users.
President-elect Joe Biden’s proposal to forgive $10,000 of federal student debt as COVID relief could erase loan balances for 15 million borrowers and reduce balances for millions more, according to federal data.
Broad student loan forgiveness could affect 45.3 million borrowers with federal student loan debt who owe a total of $1.54 trillion to the government. Wiping out $10,000 each — as Biden calls for — would result in up to $429 billion canceled.
BONUS: Congratulations, Ashleigh Walters!
A painting by artist and WPTV NewsChannel 5 anchorwoman Ashleigh Walters was sold Wednesday with a winning bid of $11,000. The painting was up for auction to benefit the WPTV Food for Families drive.
Market Auctions Inc. waived fees and matched the highest bid with a donation of $1,500. The total amount, $12,500, will be donated to WPTV Food for Families.
WPTV has raised enough, between the winning bid and donations from the community, for 240,000 pounds of food.
Ready for a roller coaster? It will start to heat back up this weekend, but not for long!
Get your complete hour-by-hour forecast here.
On This Day In History
On December 3, 1967, 53-year-old Louis Washkansky receives the first human heart transplant at Groote Schuur Hospital in Cape Town, South Africa.
Surgeon Christiaan Barnard, who trained at the University of Cape Town and in the United States, performed the revolutionary medical operation.
After Washkansky’s surgery, he was given drugs to suppress his immune system and keep his body from rejecting the heart. These drugs also left him susceptible to sickness, however, and 18 days later he died from double pneumonia. Despite the setback, Washkansky’s new heart had functioned normally until his death.
Remember, you can join Mike Trim and Ashleigh Walters every weekday on WPTV NewsChannel 5 beginning at 4:30 a.m. And you can always watch the latest news from WPTV anytime on your favorite streaming device. Just search for "WPTV."