COVID-19 cases climb back into purple

A late spike in COVID-19 cases kept San Bernardino County from moving from the Widespread (purple) to Substantial (red) tier, county officials announced on Tuesday, Sept. 29.

The county is attributing the spike to Labor Day weekend. As of Tuesday, the total number of cases is 54,849. To move into the red tier, the county must show no more than four to seven daily new cases per 100,000 residents. The county has exceeded that limit since Wednesday, Sept. 23. Now, the 14-day waiting period is reset.

Under the red tier:

• Museums and shopping centers could open indoors with 50% capacity.

• Places of worship, movie theaters and restaurants could open with 25% capacity but no more than 100 people.

• Gyms could open with 10% capacity.

During the county’s Board of Supervisors meeting on Sept. 29, Director of Public Health Corwin Porter showed a spike in cases in people ages 18 to 34. Porter also announced that 58.3% of the reported cases over the last 28 days stemmed from gatherings.

“We share in the disappointment in this news, but at the same time, we know we continue to be close to breaking this threshold,” said Board of Supervisors Chairman Curt Hagman. “With a little more effort, we can enable restaurants and other businesses to serve customers indoors, theaters to open, churches to expand worship services and schools to provide in-person instruction.”

The county is also not meeting the state testing rate of 216.35 tests per 100,000 residents. A total of 621,526 tests have been recorded with a positivity rate of 8.82%.

“We need to increase the number of tests performed by at least 1,000 a day to avoid state penalties,” Porter said.

Redlands recorded 1,866 total cases out of 22,139 tests. The city has had 92 deaths, which is third among other cities in the county. San Bernardino recorded 160. Fontana recorded 103.

As of Sept. 29, Redlands Unified School District is still in the Moderate (orange) tier. This means that there are 1 to 3.9 daily new cases per 100,000 residents living within the district.