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Upshur reports 18 new COVID-19 cases Friday, schools could reopen even as regional outbreak intensifies

The COVID-19 outbreak both in Upshur County and statewide surged to record highs on Friday, with 382 cases reported in West Virginia, including 18 locally.

A total of 87 cases are now active in Upshur County, with 71 new cases reported in the last week alone, according to the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources.

Despite reporting a record high infection rate — and one of the highest ever seen in the entire state — Upshur County fell to gold on daily alert map, meaning schools and sports could be cleared to resume next week.

All eyes will now turn to the official map release, scheduled for 5 p.m. Saturday. If Upshur County remains gold or lower, the Board of Education would have to decide if they want to follow the state’s reopening guidance given the severity of the local outbreak.

One factor that could affect the map are 17 ‘probable’ cases in Upshur County that are currently not included in the positivity rate metric that sets the map color. Those cases could be confirmed retroactively, changing the map even after it has been finalized. The panel that reviews the map could also manually set a different color than what the metrics suggest.

With all the moving parts, it could be sometime Sunday before parents will know whether school and sports will resume next week.

Upshur County remains red on the original, un-tweaked version of the map.

The current outbreak is not confirmed to Upshur County, either. Randolph County reported 19 new COVID-19 cases on Friday, Barbour and Harrison counties each reported 12 new cases, and Lewis County added four cases.

In total, the DHHR announced Friday that a single-day record 382 new cases of COVID-19 had been identified in the Mountain State.

Six additional deaths have been attributed to the disease, according to the DHHR – a 74-year old female from Kanawha County, a 64-year old male from Cabell County, a 70-year old female from Logan County, a 65-year old male from Wayne County, a 68-year old female from Jackson County, and a 61-year old female from Fayette County.

“The West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources reports as of 10 a.m., October 9, 2020, there have been 617,045 total confirmatory laboratory results received for COVID-19, with 17,707 total cases and 376 deaths,” according to a press release.

New cases were reported Friday in Barbour, Berkeley, Boone, Braxton, Brooke, Cabell, Clay, Doddridge, Fayette, Grant, Greenbrier, Hampshire, Hancock, Hardy, Harrison, Jackson, Jefferson, Kanawha, Lewis, Lincoln, Logan, Marion, Marshall, Mason, Mercer, Mineral, Mingo, Monongalia, Monroe, Morgan, Nicholas, Ohio, Pendleton, Preston, Putnam, Raleigh, Randolph, Ritchie, Roane, Summers, Tucker, Tyler, Upshur, Wayne, Wirt, Wood and Wyoming counties.

A record 4,435 West Virginia cases remain active, according DHHR data. Of the cases that are no longer active, 12,896 people have recovered and 376 have died. The daily percent positive was 3.65%.

CASES PER COUNTY: Barbour (130), Berkeley (1187), Boone (267), Braxton (16), Brooke (128), Cabell (978), Calhoun (29), Clay (48), Doddridge (40), Fayette (678), Gilmer (50), Grant (169), Greenbrier (142), Hampshire (115), Hancock (165), Hardy (98), Harrison (498), Jackson (311), Jefferson (470), Kanawha (3054), Lewis (47), Lincoln (195), Logan (688), Marion (318), Marshall (196), Mason (154), McDowell (96), Mercer (450), Mineral (181), Mingo (427), Monongalia (2135), Monroe (166), Morgan (73), Nicholas (136), Ohio (408), Pendleton (55), Pleasants (20), Pocahontas (60), Preston (168), Putnam (675), Raleigh (596), Randolph (303), Ritchie (18), Roane (65), Summers (62), Taylor (151), Tucker (44), Tyler (20), Upshur (168), Wayne (428), Webster (9), Wetzel (67), Wirt (19), Wood (401), Wyoming (135).

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