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Coronavirus / One more Covid case recorded

ANOTHER confirmed case of coronavirus has been recorded in Shetland, with the local health board saying it is a close contact with a known case.

It means that the total number of cases registered to date is 210.

Across Scotland 1,049 new cases have been reported, as well as 87 new deaths of people who have tested positive.

NHS Shetland consultant in public health Dr Susan Laidlaw said what appeared to be a sustained return to lower numbers of new local cases was positive, and a significant factor in this was the community effort in abiding by all the guidance, including adhering to social distancing.

“We know for many people in Shetland that today in particular feels difficult to not be out celebrating with friends and family for the Lerwick Up Helly Aa,” she said.

“We really appreciate everyone’s sustained efforts in combatting Covid-19 transmission by staying home, and not bending the rules to meet up with one another at a time when they usually would be.

“It is really significant that all the fire festivals have been cancelled as these are a large part of Shetland’s culture and we know it has happened only very rarely in the past.

“Unfortunately Covid-19 is too serious to take any unnecessary risks. With the vaccine roll out continuing we all look forward to something more like normal before next year’s season commences.

“But it is a beautiful day out there, so please get outside if you can safely, even if just into the garden. Wrap up warm and be very careful not to slip or fall on any ice that may still be around. And if you do leave the house please make sure you maintain at least 2m distancing from anyone else you meet.”

Deputy first minister John Swinney, meanwhile, gave an update to the Scottish Parliament this afternoon.

He said there were grounds for optimism in recent national coronavirus figures due to the lockdown measures on the mainland.

Swinney also said that the Scottish Government will “initially go at least as far as any UK Government announcement in enhancing quarantine arrangements, including through the use of hotels” for arrivals into the country.