LEWISTON — Three more students at Bates College tested positive for COVID-19 this week, part of a surge of new cases in Maine.

The new tests show there are four active cases among the more than 1,700 students at the college, all of them in isolation housing to help thwart further spread of the deadly coronavirus.

Until this week, the college had largely avoided any problems, with a total of three student cases on campus this semester, two of them near the start of school in late August and early September.

The three new positive tests were among 824 tests done on Tuesday, according to the Bates COVID-19 dashboard and several college officials.

The college has not said whether there is any connection between the three.

The director of Maine’s public health center, Nirav Shah, said on Twitter this morning the state has 103 new COVID-19 cases, its highest total.

“The surge is here,” Shah said. “Take action now. For your sake, and for the sake of your family and community, wear a mask and stay apart. This is serious.”

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