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Preston and South Ribble coronavirus infection rates as Lancashire health chief warns of ‘Christmas household mixing’ risks

Posted on - 22nd December, 2020 - 7:03pm | Author - | Posted in - Fylde News, Health, Politics, Preston News, Ribble Valley News, South Ribble News, Wyre News
A Christmas tree on a boat at Preston Docks Pic: Tony Worrall
A Christmas tree on a boat at Preston Docks Pic: Tony Worrall

New coronavirus cases and infection rates have been confirmed for Preston and South Ribble.

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The latest figures come as Lancashire health and political chiefs warned we should all ‘think carefully’ about mixing with other households on Christmas Day.

Preston recorded 58 new coronavirus cases on Tuesday (22 December).

South Ribble saw 34 new cases for the same day.

Wyre is up by 38, Fylde had 21 new cases and Ribble Valley recorded 22 cases.

Preston’s coronavirus infection rate continues the week-on-week rises, up to 242 cases per 100,000 people for the seven days to December 18, compared to 223.6 for the seven days to December 11.

See the latest coronavirus cases and information near you

South Ribble also saw a week-on-week rise, up to 191.4 from 179.6 for the same date periods as Preston.

Wyre was up to 140.1 from 125.8, Fylde fell to 108.9 from 115.1.

Ribble Valley’s rate continued to surge, up to 264.4 from 216.8.

All data is taken from the Public Health England dashboard, and for infection rates uses a seven day period – excluding the most recent four days – as case data can often change and be re-allocated in those days.

Preston, South Ribble and Lancashire remain in tier-3 restrictions which prohibits household indoor mixing and forces the closure of pubs, restaurants and other leisure facilities.

Read more: Map shows cases for each area of Preston and South Ribble

A warning for Lancashire

The Lancashire Resilience Forum took to a Zoom call on Tuesday morning to update on the county’s fight against coronavirus.

Concerns about the new variant of Covid-19, which is causing rapid rises to infection rates in London and the South East of England, were addressed.

Director of public health Dr Sakthi Karunanithi said “there is a high likelihood that the new variant is now in Lancashire.”

Anyone who has recently arrived in Preston, or Lancashire, from a tier-4 area is urged to get a Covid test – even if they are not showing symptoms.

And chair of the Lancashire Resilience Forum, and public health directors, urged people who had recently been to a tier-4 area to self-isolate.

Chief executive of Lancashire County Council Angie Ridgwell said: “If anyone is in doubt about whether or not they’ve got Covid we encourage them to get tested.”

Dr Karunanithi said if widespread household mixing was avoided on Christmas Day – the current rules will allow up to three households to mix indoors for the day – then ‘tier 4 could be avoided, or at least delayed’.

Tier-4 restrictions ban all household indoor mixing, and business and non-essential shop closures also take hold.

The Resilience Forum said a ‘staggered return’ of secondary school pupils in January was being kept ‘under review’ along with the return of schools more generally in the New Year.

EU travel ban ‘should be lifted’

Nearly all European Union member states have banned travel from the UK after the rise in the ‘mutant’ Covid strain.

The European Commission has recommended the travel ban should be lifted.

Travellers should be allowed to travel, providing they take a Covid test or self-isolate.

But they recommended non-essential travel should be discouraged.

It comes as France began to ease restrictions on lorries and freight coming from the port of Dover and the rest of the UK.

Vaccine update

In Lancashire more than 12,000 people have now been given the first jab in the fight against Covid-19.

The Lancashire Resilience Forum confirmed the roll-out of the Pfizer vaccine was continuing well across the county.

See where the vaccine is being given near you as well as latest Covid information and updates

And the company behind the vaccine, BioNTech said it was ‘highly likely’ the vaccine would continue to work against the new strain of Covid-19.

Read more: See the latest Preston news and headlines

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