HOUSTON (KIAH) — COVID-19 cases in Houston and the Harris County area continue to skyrocket. As of January 18, the new record high of 18,878 cases are being reported in the local seven-day average.

New cases topped 6,320 new cases Tuesday alone. Additionally, METRO is reporting more than a dozen cases within the city’s community transportation system.

The already overwhelmed Texas Medical Center is also reporting high community spread and positive cases in the area.

As of January 16, the Texas Medical Center reported 13,395 new cases last week.



HOUSTON BUS DRIVER CASES

Widely used community transportation is system, METRO, has released new information about new COVID-19 cases, with most stemming from behind the wheel.

Thirteen confirmed cases include bus operators. Two METRORail operators have COVID-19. Six employees in the Operations Department also have the virus. Two officers with METRO Police Department and and one METROLift employee have also tested positive.  Also among positive cases within METRO, are three contract workers employed by First Transit.

This brings the total number of cases to 1389 METRO employees and 238 contractors since March 2020. Among others, 667 of the employees within the METRO organization had no contact with the public. 

METRO tracks and reports all positive cases among its 4,000 employees and the various contractors who provide services to METRO. We are also conducting temperature checks of employees and others before they begin their workday at METRO facilities or on our vehicles.