In the wake of declining COVID-19 numbers restrictions eased this morning across the state of Massachusetts in the wake of declining numbers across the board, cases at the state's largest University are out of hand.

UMass Amherst has raised the risk level of COVID-19 from elevated to high due to the continuing surge in cases according to Chancellor Kumble R. Subbaswamy.

UMass Amherst made the decision to raise the risk level, was made with the Commonwealth’s Department of Public Health and it comes after an increase in positive cases reported among students since February 4. The university recorded 298 positive tests on campus from February 2 to 4 and a total of over 398 active cases on February 5.

Due to the number of positive cases the university has decided that all athletic activities including games and practices will pause for UMass sports programs.

These new regulations went into effect at 2 p.m. yesterday and be in place for at least 14 days and will only be lifted when public health conditions improve substantially.

According to the Daily Hampshire Gazette, off-campus in surrounding towns like Amherst and Hadley, restrictions of the capacity and hours of restaurants, gyms and other businesses will continue after health officials in both communities issued emergency orders following a COVID-19 outbreak at the University of Massachusetts. In Sunderland, where numerous UMass students live off-campus, officials are expected to decide at a special meeting tonight whether to take the same steps.

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