Watford and surrounding areas could be classed as a coronavirus ‘hotspot’ when the second national lockdown ends.

That is according to scientists at Imperial College London, who have predicted the probability of local authorities having at least 100 cases per 100,000 people over the coming weeks.

The university’s Medical Research Council Centre for Global Infectious Disease Analysis classes areas with such a rate as a Covid-19 ‘hotspot’.

The website predicts a 97 per cent chance of Watford having this amount by the week ending December 5 - three days after the second lockdown is currently due to end.

Hillingdon Times:

The probability of more than 100 cases per 100,000 population in Watford - Photo: Imperial College London

This is based on reported cases and weekly reported deaths, combined with mathematical modelling, which results in the probability of an area becoming a 'hotspot' in the following weeks.

Currently it predicts a 98 per cent chance of Watford having 100 cases per 100,000 people by the week ending November 28.

Meanwhile, scientists predict Three Rivers has a 97 per cent chance of having this amount by the week ending December 5.

Scientists also predict an 84 per cent chance of this in Hertsmere, while in Dacorum it is 88 per cent.

Hillingdon Times:

Hillingdon Times:

Hillingdon Times:

The probability of more than 100 cases per 100,000 population in Hertsmere (top), Three Rivers (middle) and Dacorum (bottom) - Photo: Imperial College London

Figures based on tests carried out in laboratories (pillar one of the Government’s testing programme) and in the wider community (pillar two) currently show that rates are over 100 cases per 100,000 population in all of Hertfordshire's ten districts.

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Council leader warns of rise in Covid cases in Three Rivers​

A total of 15,628 people in the county have tested positive for the virus since March as of 4pm November 21, with there having been 259 new cases confirmed in the last 24 hours.

On Friday Hertfordshire’s Local Resilience Forum (LRF) urged people cut out unnecessary outings and to stay at home as much as possible to slow the spread of coronavirus.

Darryl Keen, Director of Community Protection at the LRF, said Hertfordshire’s case numbers "haven’t yet fallen as significantly as we need them to".

"I can’t help but think this is because more people have ignored the restrictions and carried on as normal rather than restricting themselves to essential outings, like they did in the first lockdown,” he said.

“Add to this the fact that many people who should be self-isolating have admitted that they are not, that they’re popping to the shops, for example, and it starts to make sense.

“I ask you, please, if you should be self-isolating, do it. Stop the spread. It’s down to us. Treat everyone you meet as if they have coronavirus. Get back to the basics: wash your hands regularly and for longer, stay two metres apart, wear a face covering. We all know how to play our part.”