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A surge in coronavirus cases puts cautious Somerville in the red




“We were doing very well,” lamented Somerville’s longtime resident Joan Omera from the bustling Davis Square where people relaxed in the cafe, cut their hair and exercised in the gym.

Currently, Massachusetts has 63 communities. High risk category, Designation given to a community that has recorded more than 8 cases per 100,000 residents in the last 14 days, According to public health data released on Wednesday. When the state began publishing weekly reports on individual communities in mid-August Only 4 communities It was in the red category.

Somerville registered at 8.2 on Wednesday. Boston also maintained a deficit at a rate of 11.1, and the state-wide average also reached a deficit at a rate of 8.7.

“It’s no surprise that we’ve noticed this,” said Somerville Mayor Joseph Kurtatone, who warned many scientists that the number of incidents would skyrocket in the coming months. “Somerville was carefully measured on reopening, but we are still neighbors of other cities in the region,” butter, “and” we know that the virus doesn’t know the boundaries. “

Curtatone said city officials had not identified a particular outbreak That boosted the increase. Officials’ best guess is that the virus is simply spreading in a “family environment.”

He also predicted that the proportion of densely populated cities would remain lower than the state-wide figures and would likely fluctuate inside and outside the high-risk category.

Still, some residents were worried as the city invaded a messy territory.

Olive Obia Puna, a student at Fisher University who lives with her family in Somerville, said the latest numbers are likely to draw more attention to the virus and its potential. Going to and from school.

“I have to go to school,” she said. “I can’t go to school because of COVID. Just be careful, that’s it.”

Like everyone else, Kendra Mitzman, 27, said he wasn’t surprised to hear that the number of Somerville had increased. Mitzman, a nurse at a large hospital, said his view of the virus could have changed slightly and many were alert when returning to familiar routines and activities in line with the Before Times.

“Some of that is related to the school semester that begins for kids and college students,” she said. “There are more people around me and more people spending time indoors because it’s cold. It makes perfect sense to me that it’s getting worse.”

Concerns about Somerville’s high-risk status across the city boundaries in Porter Square, Cambridge seemed minimal. Alice Plain, who recently moved from Paris to Cambridge, said she didn’t feel threatened by a nearby surge while being cautious. The rate in Cambridge is 3.3, which is much lower than the rate of neighbors.

“‘Worry’ is really the last word I use,” she said.

But elsewhere in the state, high-risk cities were moving to make adjustments.

In Lowell, it was classified in the red category for the third straight week, with an average daily case rate of 16.4, twice that of Somerville. Public school officials have announced a shift to full distance learning starting next week. In Waltham, where the latest rate is 11.8, the Health Commission has declared a public health emergency and now requires all residents and visitors to wear masks while in public. I will.

Somerville has no immediate plans to take concrete action, but a city spokesman said authorities would closely monitor the situation.Curtatone sought more A regional approach to fighting pandemics, rather than the current town-by-town approach he compared to the arcade game “Mogura Tataki.”

“It’s time to do boldly and carefully what we have to do to defeat this pandemic resurrection,” he said. “To prevent the surge from overwhelming us, we need to double our efforts to contain the virus.”

In Cambridge, which shares a conservative resumption approach for its neighbors, the increase in incidents was expected to serve as a wake-up call.

“What we know is that the virus loves the company,” said Claude Jacob, the city’s chief public health officer. “Should there be a source of concern? My short answer reminds us that we need to be vigilant and vigilant.”

Globe staff Martin Finucane contributed to this story.

Dugan Arnett can be reached at [email protected]..Steve Annar can be reached at [email protected].. Follow him on Twitter @steveannear..

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