SALEM — Four Oregon Counties, including Morrow County, will move into the governor’s “extreme risk” designation for spreading COVID-19, according to a press release from Gov. Kate Brown’s office.

In addition to Morrow County, Baker, Clatsop and Coos counties will move from the “high risk” category to the “extreme risk” category.

“With four counties moving back to extreme risk, this week we are reminded that health and safety measures continue to be of utmost importance, even when we slow the spread of COVID-19,” Brown said in the release. “I want to remind all Oregonians to continue to do their part by abiding by the health and safety guidelines in place.”

The updated risk levels go into effect Friday, Jan. 15.

In all, 26 counties are now in the “extreme risk” level, two at “high risk,” two at “moderate risk” and six at “lower risk.” Umatilla County has been in the “extreme risk” category since Brown started the four-tier risk levels. Union County is also in the “extreme risk” category.

“Until vaccines are widely available with high participation rates, the surest way to open our communities is to continue practicing the measures we know are effective in reducing the spread of COVID-19 — wear your mask, keep physical distance from others, avoid gatherings, wash your hands often, and stay home when you are sick,” Brown said in the release.

The levels are reviewed every two weeks. The next assignment of risk levels will be announced Jan. 26 and take effect Jan. 29.

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