This strain of coronavirus spreads more easily and quickly than the original variant, the Snohomish Health District said.
As of Friday, there were 195 detections of this version in 22 states, including Oregon.
Dr. Umair Shah, state health secretary, said the state has surveillance efforts in place to detect the new variant, known as B-117. Its arrival makes prevention even more crucial, he said at a news conference.
“We need to double down on all the efforts to wash our hands, watch our distance, wear our masks, and certainly to get tested,” Shah said.