Utah Sets Another Record on Friday With 1,117 Positive COVID-19 Cases
Utah passed another grim milestone on Friday, surpassing 1,000 positive COVID-19 cases in a day for the first time since the pandemic began in March.
A mere 24 hours after breaking the state’s previous record for positive COVID-19 cases in one day with 911 on Thursday, the Utah Department of Health announced the state recorded 1,117 positive cases on Friday.
Governor Gary Herbert said at the state’s weekly COVID-19 briefing on Thursday if this current spike in cases does not come under control soon, more state-wide intervention to stem the spread of the virus is “on the table,” including a potential statewide mask order.
In a statement released on Friday, Governor Herbert said in part:
"This is another alarming day for our COVID-19 case numbers ... For months, we have warned people that they need to stay home if they are sick, and they need to stay away from others if they have tested positive for COVID-19 ... This week’s spikes make me seriously question if these warnings and public education are enough. I will meet with the Unified Command leadership again Monday to discuss needed interventions. I’d like to emphasize that all of the tools that government has for controlling the spread of COVID-19 are on the table. We are seriously considering each one of them.”
Governor Herbert has shown a reluctance to issue state-wide health mandates in the past, but this week’s numbers indicate that could change if current trends continue.
Data shows a significant portion of the state’s new positive cases come from the 15-24 year old age group, which corresponds with the reopening of high schools and universities in August, but case numbers among all ages have risen this week as well.
The majority of cases in this current spike come from Utah and Salt Lake County along the Wasatch Front. Summit County has managed to remain steady, averaging fewer than five new cases per day this week. Summit County currently has a mandatory mask order in place through the end of the year.