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BY GAYLA CAWLEY| January 5, 2021

LYNN — More than 200 coronavirus cases were reported in Lynn on Tuesday, which marks a new single-day high for the city.

The 210 new cases reported on Tuesday represent the first time more than 200 cases have been reported over a 24-hour period in the city since the pandemic began.

The previous single-day high of 196 cases was reported on Dec. 9, and matched again on Dec. 30.

Mayor Thomas M. McGee largely attributed the virus spike to a post-holiday surge stemming from a number of factors, including people traveling for the holidays and gathering with people outside of their households for Christmas and New Year’s.

Case numbers have been surging not only in Lynn, but statewide, since Thanksgiving, and the spike that was anticipated after the December holidays is beginning to present itself in the city’s positive test numbers, McGee said.

“We continue to urge people to stay close, to not be traveling and not be getting into close proximity with people indoors that they don’t usually spend time with,” said McGee.

“The reality is we’re right (at the) beginning of the surge here. The new year just ended a few days ago and we’re looking at, at least two to three weeks of people stepping back and limiting the number of infections in the city.”

To that end, McGee said he plans to sign an executive order on Wednesday that will extend the city’s modified rollback of the state’s economic reopening plan for “at least several weeks.”

Lynn rolled back to Phase 2, Step 2 of the state’s reopening plan on Dec. 18, which was aimed at limiting the size of social gatherings and required certain businesses to close, such as gyms, museums and indoor event spaces.

Those businesses will remain closed with the extension, and certain restrictions that have been placed on other businesses, such as restaurants and bars, will remain in effect until the order is lifted, McGee said.

“The important message is: stay home unless you have to go out for essential purposes over the next three weeks,” said McGee. “Don’t do non-essential gatherings in any indoor settings, which can lead to the spread.”

Following Tuesday’s spike, Lynn now has 11,916 cases, 2,025 of which are active, 161 people have died, and 9,730 have recovered from the virus, according to city data.

Complicating matters, in terms of limiting the post-Christmas spread statewide, is people are reluctant to share what they did over the holidays, when reached by contact tracing experts, McGee said.

Some people don’t respond at all, McGee added, noting that “it’s hard to put the data together when you’re getting about 50 percent of the information through contact tracing.”

“Obviously, 210 is a big number and (the virus) is impacting our community in a big way,” he said. “We need to work together to try and limit what’s happening.”

Lynn District Court was closed on Tuesday for disinfecting purposes after a court officer tested positive for COVID-19. The employee was last at District Court on Dec. 30. The courthouse will reopen on Wednesday, according to a notice on the state website.

New cases were also reported in Nahant and Revere on Tuesday, but were not updated in several other North Shore communities.

Revere reported 45 new cases and two additional deaths to bring the city’s numbers to 7,144 cases and 124 deaths, according to the city website.

In Nahant, six new cases were reported to bring the town’s caseload to 156. Six people have died, according to town data.

Lynnfield (713 cases, 20 deaths) reported no change in its numbers on Tuesday and numbers were not updated in Marblehead (735 cases, 31 deaths), Peabody (4,321 cases, 233 deaths), Saugus (2,441 cases, 51 deaths), or Swampscott (645 cases, 11 deaths).