(WWLP) – The Omicron subvariant BA.5 is now the dominant variant of COVID in the United States.

The BA.5 is one of the newest members of the family of coronavirus subvariants. This variant could continue to pose a threat to immune protection globally. At this time cases in the United States are down, but in other parts of the world like Europe are seeing an uptick in transmission rates. According to the World Health Organization, this subvariant is much more transmissible than the other omicron variants and could cause a potential surge in cases locally and the resurgence of some public health restrictions.

Linh Nguyen of Hampden said, “I just hope everyone just stays safe so no one spreads it, you know if you’re sick stay inside and stuff.”

Mary-Elizabeth Hrycay of Hampden told 22News, “Like don’t be inconsiderate, just like she said if you know that your sick don’t obviously go out and that’s going to make it come back.”

According to experts, the variant’s transmission has spread globally as it experiences biological changes that speed up its infection. Which in turn is infecting more people, more quickly.