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‘We’ve really got to be careful’: Allegheny Co. official cautiously optimistic about move to yellow

ALLEGHENY CO., Pa. — Allegheny County is the most populated area moving into the yellow phase Friday, and with that comes a lot of questions and concerns.

Channel 11’s David Johnson talked with county executive Rich Fitzgerald about everything the county has done and continues to do to prevent a major spike in COVID-19 cases.

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There are 3,255 total cases in western Pa. and 288 deaths. In Allegheny County, there have been just over 1,500 cases and 139 deaths.

On Thursday, no new deaths were reported in the county. However, Fitzgerald doesn’t want things to suddenly change because the numbers have been low.

“We've really got to be careful, or a week from now, we'll see our numbers (spike) … I don't know the lag time of when that will eventually show up, but, our numbers are very low. It has been very, very good on a lot of levels,” Fitzgerald said.

Fitzgerald said he was nervous about the idea of increased cases. But he also expressed hope that some businesses and industries that aren’t allowed to open right away in the yellow phase might be able to as we move forward.

“I am apprehensive. I am nervous about it. That is why we want everybody to keep the word and keep knowing what we need to do… I am hoping in yellow that things that aren’t opening tomorrow will slowly start to open up – I’m thinking about restaurants, hair salons, nail salons, gyms,” Fitzgerald said.

Watch the video below for the full interview.