RUGBY residents are being urged to avoid mixing with other households to avoid a local lockdown, amid a ‘worrying’ surge in Covid-19 cases in the town.
The number of cases in Rugby has soared again over the last week, at one point reaching a rate of nearly 90 cases per 100,000 people over seven days.
Rugby Borough Council is expecting the Government to introduce restrictions on communities that have an infection rate of more than 100 per 100,000 from next week – so is asking residents to take urgent steps now to avoid harsher lockdown measures.
Council and Conservative Group leader Coun Seb Lowe, Labour Group leader Maggie O’Rourke, and Liberal Democrat Group leader Coun Jerry Roodhouse have issued a joint statement.
They said: “The rate of infection in Rugby has been consistently higher than neighbouring areas since the start of September, but after seeing the infection rate reduce this trend has reversed once again.
“This is a worrying increase.
“The measures the council put in place to make town centre businesses safe places to visit have worked, but we are now starting to see a big increase in cases that have been passed on between households.
“We urge residents to take action now and not mix indoors with anyone they do not live with, except for close friends or family who are part of their support bubble.
“Anyone who has symptoms of Covid-19 such as a high temperature, new continuous cough or a loss of taste or smell, should isolate immediately with their household and not mix with anyone else or go anywhere except to take a test.
“If we limit our social contacts now, and continue to wash our hands regularly, wear a face covering in enclosed spaces and keep more than two metres from anyone we don’t live with, we will be able to continue to doing the things we enjoy without new lockdown restrictions.
“It is up to all of us to act now and do what is right for Rugby.”
Shade Agboola, Director of Public Health for Warwickshire, said: “All of the data shows that the biggest cause of transmission of Covid-19 in Rugby is social visits to friends and family. Sadly, without knowing it residents are putting their loved ones at risk.
“Our best defence from Covid-19 is to make sure that we don’t take it home with us. This means washing our hands, wearing a face covering, keeping the social distancing rules and, for now, not visiting or socialising with other households.
“We are reaching a critical point where, if infection rates don’t start to fall, we will have to have measures imposed. We have to keep going, stick to the rules, and follow these additional guidelines.”
The latest case data for Rugby shows that there have been recent cases in all wards, with the highest numbers in Coton and Boughton, Paddox, Wolston and Dunsmore.
All age groups have been affected, with the largest rise in the last few weeks in the 50-59 age group.
Cases are mostly white British, with a small number of cases from other ethnic groups.
Visit www.facebook.com/RugbyBoroughCouncil for daily updates and case information.