10 States on the Verge of COVID Surges

These states where coronavirus cases have been lower are now seeing spikes.

With COVID case numbers rising across the country, it's not a question of which states are experiencing outbreaks, but how severe those outbreaks will be. No state has been untouched by the coronavirus pandemic, and it's not clear when the latest COVID spikes will start to diminish. Looking at the data, it's easy to see which states are currently seeing the highest numbers of new cases, hospitalizations, and deaths, but how can we know which states are on the verge of COVID surges?

The New York Times keeps a regularly updated list of every U.S. state broken down into different categories. One of the most significant might be states "where new cases are lower but going up." These are states that had a daily average of fewer than 15 new coronavirus cases per 100,000 people over the past week, but where the numbers are rising. If you are wondering where COVID will spike next, these are the states to pay attention to—while some of the increases are small, this is where the data shows movement in the wrong direction.

With that in mind, these are the 10 states that could be on the precipice of new coronavirus surges. And for a look at how every state is faring, This Is How Bad the COVID Outbreak Is in Your State.


phoenix arizona

While Arizona was once one of the epicenters of the pandemic in the U.S., it made great strides in containing the virus. Now, however, the state might have to be on high alert again. Over the past 14 days, there has been a 55 percent increase in new cases, according to The New York Times, along with a 4 percent rise in deaths and a 24 percent rise in hospitalizations. To be clear, these percentage increases represent the change from the average two weeks prior. COVID Act Now says Arizona has a high infection rate of 1.14, meaning "cases are rapidly increasing."


Hartford is the capital of the U.S. state of Connecticut. Hartford is known for its attractive architectural styles and being the Insurance capital of the United States

Like many New England states, Connecticut overcame COVID's early onslaught in the Northeast. Sadly, the virus is rearing its head again. Connecticut has seen a 66 percent rise in new cases over the last two weeks. Significantly, there has also been a 114 percent rise in coronavirus deaths and a 64 percent rise in hospitalizations from the previous average. The infection rate is higher than Arizona's at 1.20, per COVID Act Now. And for ways that states are trying to contain their outbreaks, These 4 States Are Showing the First Signs of Another Lockdown.


tampa florida skyline

Another former epicenter that seemed to have turned the corner, Florida is backsliding with a 29 percent increase in new cases over the past 14 days. Just over the last week, The New York Times reports more than 20,900 new cases, contributing to Florida's 762,525 cases overall. Currently, COVID Act Now says the state has a high daily new case rate of 13.9 cases per 100,000 people, a "very large number of new cases."


atlanta georgia

Georgia's early resistance to coronavirus mitigation measures made it a state to watch, but it did seem to have managed the crisis—at least to a point. And currently, the state is seeing the curve rise again, with a 15 percent increase in cases over the last two weeks. The 10,000 new cases in the last seven days represent a troubling rate of 94 weekly cases per 100,000 people.


Springfield Massachusetts

Massachusetts is seeing a 14-day increase in every area, The New York Times reports: an 18 percent rise in new cases, a 32 percent rise in deaths, and an 11 percent rise in hospitalizations from the average two weeks prior. Over the past week, there have been nearly 5,175 new cases in Massachusetts, or 75 weekly cases per 100,000 people. And for more on how coronavirus spreads, The CDC Now Says You Can Catch COVID From Someone in Exactly This Long.

New Hampshire

Manchester is the largest city in the state of New Hampshire and the largest city in northern New England. Manchester is known for its industrial heritage, riverside mills, affordability, and arts & cultural destination.

New Hampshire is a state that hasn't been on many people's radars during the pandemic. But while containment of the virus had been effective, New Hampshire has now experienced a 54 percent increase in new cases in the last 14 days. While the daily new case rate of 6 cases per 100,000 people means COVID is "at low levels," according to COVID Act Now, the infection rate of 1.13 reflects the fast escalation of new cases.

New Jersey

Newark is the largest city in New Jersey. Newark is one of largest rail and air hubs in the nation. Newark is known for its glamorous performing arts venues, premium outlet mall, museums, and the argest collection of cherry blossoms.

Like its neighbor New York, New Jersey was hit hard in the early days of the pandemic, then had a significant recovery. Unlike New York, however, there have been more bumps in the road for the Garden State, and the latest bump is beginning to look suspiciously like the start of a new curve. The New York Times reports a 57 percent rise in cases over the last 14 days, an 80 percent rise in deaths, and a 45 percent rise in hospitalizations from the average two weeks before. New Jersey now has a high daily new case rate of 11.6 cases per 100,000 people, COVID Act Now says. And for more on the state's outbreak, New Jersey's Governor Just Urged Residents "Not to Travel" Due to COVID.


downtown pittsburgh pennsylvania

As with New Jersey, Pennsylvania has seen 14-day increases in the three key areas from the state's previous average two weeks before: a 40 percent rise in COVID cases, a 13 percent rise in deaths, and a 45 percent rise in hospitalizations. According to COVID Act Now, Pennsylvania is quite close to New Jersey when it comes to current coronavirus containment. Both states are seeing 11.6 daily new cases per 100,000 people, but Pennsylvania has a slightly lower (though still high) infection rate of 1.10.


richmond virginia skyline

After a series of highs and lows throughout the pandemic, Virginia is in danger of another upswing, per The New York Times. Cases are up 32 percent over the last two weeks, along with deaths and hospitalizations. In the last week, Virginia saw just over 7,160 new cases, which equals 84 weekly cases per 100,000 people. COVID Act Now shows the state's daily new case rate is 12 cases per 100,000 people. And for more up-to-date information, sign up for our daily newsletter.


tacoma washington sleepless cities

The situation may not be as dire in Washington—another early COVID hotspot in the U.S.—but the state is still seeing modest increases that could point to another coronavirus surge. Over the last 14 days, cases are up 16 percent, The New York Times reports, with hospitalizations from COVID up 11 percent. There have been more than 4,555 new cases in Washington in the last week, or 60 weekly cases per 100,000 people. To date, the state has seen nearly 104,625 coronavirus cases.

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