By CBSNewYork Team

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Nearly 20 new cases of COVID-19 variants believed to be more contagious have been detected in New York.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo says a second case of the variant first found in South Africa was confirmed in Nassau County.

Eighteen new cases of the variant first seen in the U.K. have been identified throughout the state. Nassau and Rockland counties each have two new cases.

CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC

Dutchess, Putnam and Westchester have one each.

New York City has six new cases.

MORE: Long Island Resident Tests Positive For COVID-19 Variant First Detected In South Africa

Mayor Bill de Blasio says safety guidelines will remain in place until early summer.

“We’re very concerned about the variants, for example. That’s a big X factor. But I think a good way for New Yorkers to think about now is for the first half of this year, from now through June, keep doing exactly what you’re doing. Not just wear a mask, wear two,” he said.

The mayor says the city hopes to have 5 million New Yorkers fully vaccinated by June.

CBSNewYork Team