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Concern as Stockport sees a coronavirus spike while Trafford also sees a rise

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Mike Pennington / Geograph

Coronavirus cases in Stockport have remained relatively low throughout the pandemic, but concerns have been raised as they’re now growing, particularly in young people. 

COVID-19 has spiked in Stockport over the weekend with a number of young adults testing positive.

Through late June and early July, the borough recorded five or fewer cases a day on average. Since last Thursday however, this number has shot up to between five and 15. 

The council’s Chief Executive, Pam Smith has reportedly attributed this to an outbreak in a care home and a significant rise among young adults (18-25). 

Gerald England/Geograph

According to Andy Burnham’s weekly updates, Stockport’s infection rate has been consistently one of the lowest in Greater Manchester. 

Stockport Council says the infection rate continues to be ‘well below’ many other areas but there has been a ‘noticeable rise’ in the number of cases in the age category 18-25. 

Jennifer Connolly, Stockport Council’s director of public health, said: “We would like to remind all residents, no matter what age they are, of the importance of not meeting up with anyone if there are any confirmed cases within the household.

“If this is the case households should isolate for 14 days if a household member has been tested positive or has symptoms and is awaiting test results. We encourage everyone in Stockport to comply with NHS test and trace advice, including isolating for 14 days if you are advised to do so following contact with someone who has been confirmed as having Covid-19.”

Stockport council leader, Elise Wilson added: “It’s absolutely right we put targeted stuff out. We know, because we have a robust plan and robust systems in place it means we can react to it and keep people informed. It is a good thing, we have this in place and it’s working.”

Mike Pennington / Geograph

Similarly, there has been a spike in coronavirus cases in Trafford which is also proportionately higher in younger people.

The number of people who have tested positive for COVID-19 has risen in the borough, with half of the new cases being accounted for by 17-23 year olds. 

In the week ending July 17th, the number of new coronavirus cases in Trafford was 26, which rose to 77 in the following week. 39 of these were aged between 15 and 25. 

Public Health bosses have confirmed that the number of young people who are getting tested has increased and could therefore be partly responsible for the increase. 

 Keith Williamson/Geograph

Eleanor Roaf, director of Public Health at Trafford Council, said: “We have seen a rise in young people coming forward to be tested and this has led to an increase in positive cases.

“We don’t know exactly why this is but we are thanking younger people for acting responsibly in coming forward for tests when they feel ill.

“We think that the young people have been contacting each other and raising awareness of the importance of testing.

“If this is the case, we would like to thank them for their efforts, as this will help us stop further spread of the disease.

“I would urge everyone to continue to stick to the rules around social distancing and hand-washing when they are meeting up with friends or going out to pubs and restaurants.”

Charles Bowring/Wikimedia

Councillor Jane Slater, Trafford Council’s Executive Member for Health, Wellbeing and Equalities said: “While any increase in cases are a cause for concern I am reassured that people are coming forward to be tested and I would urge anyone showing symptoms to make sure they are tested and if they test positive to self-isolate.

“No-one should be complacent as the virus has not gone away and still poses a risk especially to the vulnerable in our society.”

Medical Director at NHS Trafford Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), Dr Mark Jarvis, added: “My colleagues and I have witnessed first-hand the effects of this virus and it is absolutely true to say that this pandemic is not over.

“Together, we have done an excellent job in keeping cases very low in Trafford but we cannot allow complacency to creep in and undo what we’ve achieved.

“Please, if you feel unwell and are showing symptoms such as a change of taste and smell, have a new persistent cough or have a fever, book a test as soon as possible.

“You are not just looking after yourself, you are looking after the people around you, whether it’s your friends, family or local community.”

The news comes after Oldham introduced strict new restrictions due to a ‘dramatic’ spike in cases. 

Stockport council has continued to promote the ‘key steps’ people should take to help reduce the spread of COVID-19, including:

  • Keep 2m physical distancing 
  • Self isolate and get tested if you get symptoms of COVID-19
  • Wear a face mask in enclosed spaces
  • Keep good hand hygiene
  • Isolate if you come into contact with someone who has COVID-19 

A new mobile testing facility has been set up in University Academy 92 in Old Trafford as a response to the trends found in that borough. 

A new social media campaign targeting younger adult has launched this week to help share important public health messages. 

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Student suffers severe heart failure after drinking four cans of energy drink a day

‘I believe they are very addictive and far too accessible to young children’

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AlienFood/Wikimedia & Austin Kirk/Flickr

A young man who consumed two litres of energy drink a day was admitted to intensive care with severe heart failure.

According to a leading medical journal, the university student landed himself in hospital after drinking four cans of energy drink per day.

The 21-year-old spent nearly two months in intensive care due to heart failure, with the British Medical Journal stating this was ‘potentially related to excessive energy drink consumption’ in a report.

According to the report, the man drank four 500ml energy drinks every day for two years, becoming so ill that medics thought he might require an organ transplant.

The patient went on to describe his medical episode as ‘traumatising’, eventually seeking medical help after he suffered from weight loss and shortness of breath for roughly four months.

Daniel Juřena / Flickr

Doctors performed blood tests, scans, and ECG readings, and found that he had both kidney and heart failure – however, the kidney failure was discovered to be linked to a previously undiagnosed condition.

Each energy drink the man was consuming contained around 160mg of caffeine, and medics said that ‘energy drink-induced cardiotoxicity’ was the most likely cause of the severe heart failure.

In the report, the authors from Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust wrote: “We report a case of severe biventricular heart failure potentially related to excessive energy drink consumption in a 21-year-old man.”

They said the conclusion to their report ‘adds to the growing concern in the literature about the potential cardiotoxic effects of energy drinks’, adding that the man’s heart function seems to have returned to normal nine months later but with ‘mildly impaired function’.

AlienFood / Wikimedia

The recovered patient added his own thoughts to the article, saying: “When I was drinking up to four energy drinks per day, I suffered from tremors and heart palpitations, which interfered with my ability to concentrate on daily tasks and my studies at university.

“I also suffered from severe migraine headaches which would often occur during the periods when I did not drink energy drink; this also restricted my ability to perform day-to-day tasks and even leisurely activities such as going to the park or taking a walk.”

He added: “I think there should be more awareness about energy drinks and the effect of their contents.

“I believe they are very addictive and far too accessible to young children. I think warning labels, similar to smoking, should be made to illustrate the potential dangers of the ingredients in energy drink.”

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Drivers could soon be fined for parking on the pavement under new rules

Make sure you’re aware of the proposed rule changes

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Jaggery / Geograph

A ban on parking on the pavement could soon be implemented across England, under new laws which are expected to be rolled out this year.

Parking on pavements would be a thing of the past, with £70 penalty fines for offenders coming into effect under the proposed new rules.

According to reports, the new legislation would see a ban on antisocial parking introduced, in a bid to make pavements safer for people with disabilities and visual impairments, as well as families.

The changes to the law which are being considered have already been implemented in London and would be rolled out nationwide.



They come in response to complaints about pavement parking and the risks it brings with it to those whose use pavements, with the Department for Transport (DfT) initially launching a proposal on the subject in September 2020.

The proposals came after a review discovered that almost half of wheelchair users and a third of visually impaired people were less willing to go out on the streets alone due to ‘antisocial’ parking on the pavement.

A spokeswoman from the DfT explained to The Mirror that the government is currently collating responses after receiving ‘overwhelming’ feedback.

The public consultation period for the proposals ended back on November 22nd, and as such a decision on the plan is expected imminently.

Jaggery / Geograph

However, Mark Tongue, director of Select Car Leasing has said that ‘the guidelines are currently quite confusing for motorists’.

The motoring company conducted a report which discovered that local authorities would have the power to dish out £70 fines if a vehicle was considered an obstruction, even if it was parked outside the driver’s house.

Mr Tongue said: “A pavement parking ban is 100% needed nationwide – anything that puts pedestrians at an increased risk requires action.

“However, the information given so far is slightly confusing for drivers. At the moment, there’s no clear guidelines for those who park on the pavement due to having no room on their own drive. Most households have more than one car, so it will be interesting to see where motorists are expected to park if not on the pavement outside their homes.

“Clear guidance is required for drivers so they know the correct location to park in order to avoid a fine.”

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Operation Forth Bridge: the full plan for what happens next after Prince Philip’s death

Buckingham Palace confirmed the sad news of his passing earlier today

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Michael Garnett / Flickr

Buckingham Palace announced this afternoon that HRH Prince Philip, The Duke of Edinburgh has died.

The 99-year-old, who would have celebrated his 100th birthday in June, passed away peacefully at Windsor Castle this morning, Friday April 9th.

Buckingham Palace said: “It is with deep sorrow that Her Majesty The Queen has announced the death of her beloved husband, His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.

“His Royal Highness passed away peacefully this morning at Windsor Castle.

“Further announcements will be made in due course. The Royal Family join with people around the world in mourning his loss.”

There were already strict procedures put in place for when Prince Philip died, which have now begun, and they’re known as Operation Forth Bridge.

According to the plan there are several steps that need to be followed, including everything from national mourning to a burial site for the Duke.

Operation Forth Bridge has been around for many years, with Buckingham Palace, in consultation with both the Queen and Prince Philip, regularly updating and reviewing it.

Part one of the operation was the announcement from Buckingham Palace confirming the death of the Duke, which was distributed to the Press Association and BBC first.

Then the country enters a period of national mourning, meaning a set of rules, like flags being flown at half-mast, must be followed.

According to reports, it’s thought newsreaders and other TV presenters must wear black out of respect.

Jamie McCaffrey / Flickr

Next, plans for the funeral will be drawn up, and while Prince Philip is entitled to a state funeral he reportedly wanted something more discreet – a private service in the style of a military funeral at St George’s Chapel in Windsor, followed by burial at Frogmore Gardens.

The funeral is still expected to be televised despite the current restrictions, although it remains unclear how many people will be able to attend it.

The Queen’s private secretary and senior adviser, Sir Edward Young, will be on hand to help her during the undoubtedly challenging days ahead.

As well as being responsible for supporting the Queen in her duties, Sir Edward is also the channel of communication between the Queen and the government.

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