Kanawha County goes orange after increase in COVID-19 cases

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The state’s most populous county is facing the possibility of not having high school football or other sporting events during the first week of the season because of rising COVID-19 cases.

The state Department of Health and Human Resources moved Kanawha County to the ‘orange’ category on the County Alert System map Wednesday after the rolling 7-day average of COVID-19 positive cases moved to 12.11 cases.

Kanawha, Logan and Monroe counties are the only counties in the ‘orange’ category. There are 17 counties in ‘yellow’ and 35 in ‘green’ which is the fewest number of average cases.

Orange, considered heightened community transmission, means schools cannot open to in-person instruction. School sports teams can practice but not play games. The map is updated each day so Wednesday’s change won’t have an immediate impact on those activities since school doesn’t begin until Sept. 8. If Kanawha or any other county is orange on Saturday night’s map their school teams will not be allowed to play games the following week. High school football games begin Sept. 3.

The state reported additional COVID-19 deaths Wednesday including a 61-year-old woman from Logan County, a 72-year-old woman from Mercer County and an 87-year-old woman from Ohio County.

“We are deeply saddened by this news, a loss to both the family and our state,” state DHHR Secretary Bill Crouch said.

The state has recorded 190 COVID-19 deaths.

The agency confirmed 145 new cases Wednesday taking active cases to 1,749. The positive test rate is 2.35 percent.

There are 143 people in the hospital, 42 in ICU and 22 being treated on ventilators.

Total confirmed cases include:

Barbour (33), Berkeley (777), Boone (131), Braxton (9), Brooke (85), Cabell (501), Calhoun (8), Clay (19), Doddridge (6), Fayette (195), Gilmer (18), Grant (138), Greenbrier (99), Hampshire (91), Hancock (118), Hardy (66), Harrison (259), Jackson (194), Jefferson (332), Kanawha (1,281), Lewis (32), Lincoln (111), Logan (454), Marion (212), Marshall (134), Mason (91), McDowell (72), Mercer (284), Mineral (131), Mingo (222), Monongalia (1,072), Monroe (91), Morgan (37), Nicholas (47), Ohio (289), Pendleton (44), Pleasants (14), Pocahontas (42), Preston (136), Putnam (254), Raleigh (331), Randolph (220), Ritchie (3), Roane (25), Summers (18), Taylor (103), Tucker (11), Tyler (15), Upshur (41), Wayne (232), Webster (7), Wetzel (45), Wirt (8), Wood (297), Wyoming (55).

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