Jefferson County opened a new large-capacity COVID-19 testing site Sunday even as state officials warned people in the Denver area of “severe risk” from the novel coronavirus.

Officials sent an emergency alert to cell phones in the Denver region at 9 a.m. Sunday asking residents to use caution given the skyrocketing rates of the virus.

Health officials have struggled to keep up with the soaring demand for testing and contact tracing as the virus has swelled in a third wave this fall. The large-scale, free testing site in Jefferson County opened at the county fairgrounds at 15200 W. 6th Frontage Road in Golden on Sunday.

Those seeking testing can make an appointment in advance or just show up; no insurance or identification is required to

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