By Jesse Sarles

DENVER (CBS4) – Colorado has just recorded its highest single-day COVID-19 caseload since the spring. That, combined with the 290 hospitalizations due to coronavirus, has Gov. Jared Polis very worried.

(credit: CBS)

“We need to get this under control now,” Polis said in a news conference on Tuesday afternoon.

The coronavirus three-day positivity rate is also now at above 5%. That’s a rate the World Health Organization classifies as an active outbreak and when additional concerns should be launched around public safety regarding community transmission.

“We’ve got to get these numbers down. If this trend continues our hospital capacity will be in jeopardy,” the governor said.

Polis said it’s imperative for Colordans to wear masks in public places, practice social distancing, wash hands regularly with soap and reduce the number of social interactions.

The governor said the COVID pandemic is posing a major risk the state’s economy and with the holiday season coming soon, if the numbers continue the way they have been it could spell disaster.

“We have to do better if we want our economy to grow. Because in the areas (outside Colorado) that have had acute hotspots there has been a complete deterioration in consumer confidence and people are terrified to leave their home, engage in commerce. We don’t want that here,” Polis said. “The better we do at containing the virus and reducing transmission, the more confidence consumers have. The more they’re willing to shop and dine. That helps our small businesses. That helps the workers that are employed there.”

Sonia Riggs, president of the Colorado Restaurant Association, joined the governor at Tuesday’s news conference and spoke about a new effort underway to try to help restaurants who are concerned about losing their expanded outdoor dining spaces with the onset of cold weather. A workshop will be held soon to provide guidance for restaurant owners looking for solutions.

Jesse Sarles