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Covid surge in Swinford Electoral Area


‘WE WILL GET NUMBERS DOWN’ Cllr Michael Smyth, Cathaoirleach of Mayo County Council. Pic: Michael McLaughlin

Westport and Swinford have third and fourth highest rates of Covid-19 in the country

Edwin McGreal

Westport and Swinford are among the highest electoral areas in the country for Covid-19 positive cases.
Westport remains the third highest nationally for a second successive week while cases in Swinford have surged and it has the fourth highest rate in the country.
Swinford Electoral Area – which also includes Foxford, Charlestown and Kiltimagh – has went from having 63 cases last week to 178 cases now, an increase of 183 percent.
In the two week period from July 27 to August 9, Swinford has an incidence rate of 1,029.7, well over twice the national average of 422.5.
Compare that with an incidence rate of 364.5 for the two week period from July 20 to August 2 and you can see the sharp rise.
Cathaoirleach of Mayo County Council, Swinford-based Cllr Michael Smyth said ‘some complacency has set in’.
“People are looking at the figures for so long … actually for many months Swinford and Westport were the poster boys with very low numbers. I think what we are seeing now is a pattern we will see in a lot of electoral areas in the coming weeks,” he told The Mayo News
“I don’t think there’s any point laying the blame at any one group. I’m not aware of any super spreader or series of smaller events in the general community causing issues.
“I think people feel that they are bullet proof with the two jabs … They are not. It is merely a case that the chances of being in hospital are reduced but that is all. Covid is still something you do not want to get.
“I have seen numerous people on my travels not complying. I have to add any restaurant or pub I was in was very compliant. I have been asked for my Covid cert everywhere.
“I think if we all remind ourselves in this area of the public health advice in terms of limiting your contacts, wearing masks, washing hands and keeping your distance, we will get the numbers down,” he added.

Westport numbers fall
Westport remains the third highest although the incidence rate there has dropped, from 1,229.7 for the two week period to August 2 down to 1,033.8, for the most recent two week period, to Monday, August 9.
Case numbers have fallen from 226 to 190, a 16 percent fall.
Carndonagh and Buncrana in Donegal remain the two highest areas for Covid-19 incidence.
Elsewhere in Mayo numbers have climbed in Claremorris.
For the two weeks to August 2, there were 49 cases there, in the week that followed those numbers rose to 201. It has an incidence rate of 740.6, well above the national average.
Claremorris also includes Ballinrobe, Ballyhaunis and Knock.
Castlebar is above the national average too with an incidence rate of 540.1, the numbers there rising from 114 last week to 162 in the latest figures.
Ballina is next with 119 cases, an incidence rate of 473.9. They had 119 cases in the latest figures, up from 93.
Belmullet Electoral Area continues to remain extremely low, with just 23 cases and an incidence rate of 182.5, less than half the national average. They had only one less case in the two week period to August 2.
It means it has, for the second week running, the lowest incidence rate in Connacht and one of the lowest in the country.