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PRINCETON — The total number of coronavirus cases in Mercer County rose to 50 on Sunday, according to the Mercer County Health Department. 

5 new cases of COVID-19 were reported over the Independence Day weekend, forcing Mercer County over the ominous 50 case milestone. 37 of those cases have been confirmed in the last two weeks alone. 

The two new cases reported on Sunday were both the result of community transmission, according to the Mercer County Health Department. Contact tracing has been completed, and anyone at significant risk of contracting the virus has been identified and isolated.

The Mercer County Health Department's Sunday release broke down the causes of the 37 cases found in the last two weeks. 54 percent of them were the result of community transmission, and 27 percent were found to be related to Myrtle Beach, S.C. The remaining 19 percent resulted from travel to other locations. 

Monroe County also saw another case on Sunday, raising its total to 15. Another probable case was also listed on the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources' 5 p.m. online update.

West Virginia reported over 100 more cases on Sunday in the state, raising its confirmed case count to 3,230. An additional 105 cases are considered probable but not yet confirmed. Another death was also reported in the state, raising the toll to 95.

Two counties in Virginia also saw an increase in cases as well over the weekend. Wythe County's case count rose to 56, Buchanan County saw two more for a total of 33. 

Virginia's confirmed total rose to 62,981 COVID-19 cases, with 2,767 more cases suspected. 1,746 confirmed deaths were also reported, and an additional 107 deaths in the Commonwealth were suspected to be related to the virus. 

The Mountain State's Gov. Jim Justice warned West Virginians to prepare for a mandatory face mask order on Thursday if the state saw an increase in cases. The state as seen a steady increase of virus cases over the last few weeks with surges and hotspots being found around the state, many related to residents summer travels to Myrtle Beach, S.C., according to an Associated Press report last week. 

During his Thursday address, Gov. Justice said about a mandatory face mask order, "If that is such a horrible, horrible inconvenience in your life, please just think of what it will do to save us and keep us able to do all of the things that we're doing today in West Virginia," according to the Associate Press report. 

Gov. Justice is expected to make a decision on the mandatory face mask order early this week.

— Contact James Trent at jtrent@bdtonline.com

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