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Red to Orange: One set of numbers says it's OK, one says it's risky

Posted at 7:33 PM, May 04, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-04 21:35:52-04

SALT LAKE CITY — We are averaging more cases per day than we ever have in Utah. The seven day rolling average of 155 means the risk of being infected in Utah is as high as it's ever been, even as we start to open up businesses and gather in somewhat larger groups.

So why open up? Our rate of daily increase is very low — around three percent per day. That's good, showing that we don't have exponential growth. We've plateaued at numbers that are not overwhelming our hospitals.

In the following chart every blue dot represents the percentage increase and the average daily increase. I've labeled two spots. At the top of the chart you can see the most recent day in the data: May 4, with the highest daily increase but close to the lowest percentage increase. At the far right you see the earliest day in the data, March 6, when Utah's case number went from 1 to 3 cases.