By Rachel DeSantis

The governor of Washington State has declared a state of emergency due to an ongoing outbreak of measles.

Gov. Jay Inslee issued the proclamation Friday, deeming the outbreak of the highly contagious viral infection a "public disaster" affecting the life, health, property and public peace of his state's residents.

The Washington State Health Department has so far confirmed 31 cases of measles in Clark County and one in King County as of Saturday.

Twenty-one of those cases affect children between the ages of 1 and 10, while nine affect those between 11 and 18, according to Clark County Public Health.

Inslee reminded citizens in his proclamation that measles can be prevented with a vaccination, and urged Washington residents that "proactive steps to provide the vaccination and other measures must be taken quickly to prevent further spread of the disease."

An Incident Management Structure has been put together by the Health Department to manage "public health aspects of the incident."

Health officials this month warned that basketball fans who attended the Portland Trail Blazers game Jan. 11 may have been exposed to the disease.

Symptoms include high fever, cough, runny nose and red, watery eyes, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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