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Continue precautions as coronavirus hangs on

When the coronavirus pandemic first became a reality in our area, it was all anyone could talk about. That was true for us, too, as we tried to keep the community updated on case numbers and restrictions relevant to Franklin County.

As with anything, however, the new wore off, and we all tried to find that “new normal” we had heard so much about. Our reporting on the coronavirus began to dwindle somewhat as it became the proverbial “yesterday’s news.”

While COVID-19 is no longer new news, it is – unfortunately – a reality we all need to keep in mind. And with the way it’s still impacting our community, it’s kind of hard to forget.

It seems that everywhere we look the virus has impacted Franklin County in a very real way. Phil Campbell had to forfeit a football game last week because of quarantining. The Russellville mayor and two others at Russellville City Hall tested positive. Masks and social distancing are still the order of the day no matter where you go, and annual events like the Walk to Wellness and Trunk or Treat are only able to continue with precautions like these in mind.

In case you haven’t heard the numbers in a while, they cast a stark light on what this pandemic has meant for our county 2,064 total cases and 32 total deaths.

According to the ADPH’s COVID-19 risk indicator, FC is in the high risk category.

Statewide, Alabama reports 2,892 deaths because of the coronavirus. That’s out of 186,437 cases.

The fact is, we’re not out of the woods yet. Potentially compounding the problem is the cooler weather that is approaching; we haven’t yet experienced a flu season compounded by coronavirus, since it didn’t set in until March.

Could this still get worse before it gets better? That’s under debate, with not all officials in agreement. It seems to us, however, that this is the time to be on the safe side and not play chicken with your health or our community’s wellbeing.

We ask you to please continue all precautions outlined by both the CDC and state officials. Wear your mask. Distance yourself from those outside your household. Avoid touching your face. Wash your hands, wash your hands, wash your hands.

When you venture out, whether it’s to the grocery store or an athletic event, to church or to a restaurant, remember that the people around you might have the coronavirus – and be able to pass it on to you – without even realizing it, if they are asymptomatic. For that matter, YOU might unknowingly have the virus and be able to pass it along to others.

It’s a tired old cliche, but it still rings true: An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Let’s do everything we can to prevent the spread of coronavirus, making safe and smart choices for ourselves as well as our community.