More than 90 percent of North Carolina counties are in red or orange zones on county alert map

More than 90 percent of North Carolina counties are now in the red or orange tier on the county alert map.

That means there is critical or substantial levels of community spread of COVID-19 in the large majority of counties in the state.


The COVID-19 County Alert System uses metrics informed by the White House Coronavirus Task Force and North Carolina's key metrics to categorize counties into three tiers:

Yellow: Significant Community Spread
Orange: Substantial Community Spread
Red: Critical Community Spread

The report takes into account three metrics: case rate, the percent of tests that are positive and hospital impact within the county.

WATCH: Dr. Mandy Cohen explains the latest report
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"If you are in a red or orange county, you should limit going out to essential activities and avoid people you don't live with," she said.

Since the last report was released two weeks ago, the number of counties in the red has increased from 48 to 65.
The number of counties in the orange has increased by 27.

"This is alarming," Governor Roy Cooper said during a news conference on Tuesday. "92 of our 100 counties are designated as red or orange. In the last week, we saw a daily case record of 8,444 with the percent of tests positive coming back at more than 10 percent. This virus continues to spread quickly. Don't get numb to these numbers."

Durham and Wake counties are now both in the orange.

Orange and Chatham remain in the yellow.

Person, Vance, Warren, Halifax, Wilson, Franklin, Nash, Harnett, Johnston, Lee, Moore, Cumberland and Hoke counties are in the red.

Individuals in red and counties are encouraged to take the following precautions:

  • Limit mixing between households and minimize the number of people in your social circle
  • Avoid settings where people congregate, like outdoor bars and night spots
  • If patronizing restaurants, consider ordering take out from restaurants and/or eating outdoors socially distanced
  • Individuals who are high-risk for developing serious illness should consider staying at home as much as possible
  • Reduce your public interactions to mainly essential activities
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