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Coronavirus outbreak linked to Birmingham pub BBQ as health officials scramble to trace 70 pubgoers

HEALTH officials are scrambling to trace 70 customers after a coronavirus outbreak linked to a pub BBQ in Birmingham.

The Soho Foundry in Smethwick, West Mids., was forced to temporarily close after three people tested positive for Covid-19.

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Sandwell Council and Public Health England bosses have launched an “urgent appeal” to find the 70 people who attended the event on August 2 to self-isolate.

Deputy council leader Maria Crompton said: “We urgently need to alert anyone who attended the event last weekend to self-isolate until Sunday 16th August.

“If they have any symptoms they should book a test.

“Everyone needs to stay incredibly vigilant – the virus is still out there and the situation remains extremely serious – as this potential outbreak shows.”

The council also praised the pub manager’s action in response to the outbreak.

Dr Lisa McNally, the director of public health at the local authority, said: “They did exactly what we would want business owners to do in this situation.

“They voluntarily took the decision to close and contacted us for advice. I would urge all businesses to do the same.

“Pubs need to be very careful at this time to gather contact details of customers and ensure social distancing at all times.”

The borough of Sandwell was named as an “area of concern” last week and put on a national watch list.

However, the rate in the borough has since dropped by a third after the spike.

Last month, a McDonald’s in Sandwell was forced to shut after five workers tested positive.

This week, a pub landlord admitted he was “complacent” over social distancing rules that lead to at least 19 confirmed coronavirus cases linked back to his establishment.

In Aberdeen, a second bar shut after being linked to a coronavirus outbreak.

Soul Bar shut its doors after a punter, who also visited the Hawthorn Bar, tested positive for Covid-19.

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