IF we don’t social distance, we risk going into a local lockdown – that’s the message from south west Wales local authority leaders, the health board and Dyfed-Powys Police.

Partners in the Carmarthenshire, Pembrokeshire and Ceredigion region have joined together to urge people to follow the national advice and take action to protect each other as positive cases of Covid-19 start to rise again.

They are particularly warning people about the risk of gathering in large groups, attending community events or visiting licensed premises where social distancing measures are not being followed.

Local authority leaders in the area are urging everyone to play their part in keeping their counties and communities safe.

In a joint statement, Leaders Cllr Emlyn Dole of Carmarthenshire, Cllr David Simpson of Pembrokeshire and Cllr Ellen ap Gwynn of Ceredigion, said: “The last thing we want to do is go into a local lockdown, as has already happened elsewhere in Wales. But, if the rising threat and lack of social distancing continues we may have to take necessary action.

“This pandemic is far from over – the virus is still circulating and the risk is still high. People need to respect the measures that are in place and take personal responsibility for social distancing and good hygiene.

“Please help keep the communities of Carmarthenshire, Pembrokeshire and Ceredigion safe – we all have to play our part to protect ourselves and each other.”
Their warning comes after a cluster of positive Covid-19 cases was confirmed in Carmarthenshire, centred around a community event.

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The national advice around social distancing remains that people should stay two metres from other people who are not part of their own, or their extended household, when meeting outdoors and in enclosed spaces.

People should avoid large and small gatherings in public spaces, and avoid indoor gatherings with friends and family other than people they live with or those in their extended household.

Further measures and information can be found on the Welsh Government website.

Chair of Hywel Dda University Health Board, Maria Battle, said: “We have been very fortunate in West Wales in our relatively low infection rates of COVID-19. This was due to the tremendous efforts of the public in following safety guidelines which prevented the spread of this deadly disease.

“Coronavirus has not gone away and remains a very serious illness, especially for the elderly and those with existing medical conditions. I would urge the public to continue to follow health advice to keep us safe, including keeping two metres away from others outside of their household bubble, minimising their contacts where possible, avoiding gatherings of more than 30 people, as well as washing hands regularly, or using a hand sanitizer if hand washing is not possible.

“Maintaining these habits remains absolutely vital in reducing the impact and spread of the pandemic. The public are also a crucial partner in the Test, Trace, Protect strategy. It is only with your support and willingness to report symptoms, identify contacts and follow advice about self-isolating, that we can identify and tackle any new cases and protect each other.”

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