Flu cases are surging throughout Riverside County, prompting public health officials to urge residents to take precautions aimed at prevention. “It’s a rough season, and there’s no indication it’s slowing down,” Dr. Cameron Kaiser, county public health officer, said. According to Barbara Cole, director of disease control of Riverside University Health System, about 1,000 residents tested positive in December for influenza at urgent care and county public health clinics, as well as during doctor visits – a sizable documented number this early into flu season. Cole said there have been four flu-related deaths, one involving a child under 5 years old. Seventeen residents over 65 had to be hospitalized because of compromised immune systems and other factors, she said.