December 18, 2020 4.57 pm This story is over 41 months old

Scientists predict New Year COVID hotspot in Lincolnshire

Boston, Lincoln and West Lindsey most likely

Scientists at Imperial College London have predicted that Boston, Lincoln and West Lindsey are highly likely to have an infection rate of more than 300 cases each per week by January 1, 2021.

The scientists created an interactive map using a model which combines specimen dates and whether the R (reproduction) rate is greater than 1. It assumes there are no further changes in intervention.

England has an infection rate of 206.6 cases per 100,000 people, official data shows, however, it is expected to continue rising — particularly during the Christmas relaxations.

According to the map, Lincoln has a 92% chance of having more than 300 cases per week by New Year’s Day. Boston and West Lindsey both have a 71% chance of reaching the figure. Most other areas are 12% or under.

The predictions Imperial College London make for those reaching 300 cases a week by New Year’s Day.

The percentage chance increases drastically when the table is set to those predicted to have 200 cases a week, with Lincoln having a 99% chance, West Lindsey 97%, and Boston 91%.

North Kesteven shoots up to a 48% chance, South Kesteven 65% and South Holland 33%.

North Lincolnshire has a 21% chance, while East Lindsey seems low risk at 5%. North East Lincolnshire is predicted to have no chance of reaching 200 cases a week.

The predictions Imperial College London make for those reaching 200 cases a week by New Years Day.

Because government data is only reliable up until December 13, five days ago, it cannot be confirmed if this is correct.

However, official data from Public Health England shows that of the 315 local areas in England, 261 (83%) have seen a rise in case rates.

As of December 16, five councils saw an increase in infection rates and the Greater Lincolnshire average rose as a whole.