Covid-19: Germany limits travel after new surge in coronavirus across Europe

MIchael Howie
·1-min read
A Lufthansa Boeing 747 is pulled to a parking position at the airport in Frankfurt: AP
A Lufthansa Boeing 747 is pulled to a parking position at the airport in Frankfurt: AP

Germany today issued travel warnings for a string of European countries as new restrictions continued to be imposed across the Continent to contain the spread of coronavirus.

Warnings against unnecessary travel were extended to Switzerland, Ireland, Poland and most of Austria, where infections have been surging in recent weeks.

The measures — which come into effect from Saturday — could have a big impact on Alpine countries’ winter tourism industry.

Austria last reported an average of 121.4 new cases per 100,000 inhabitants over seven days, far in excess of the critical 50 threshold.

Elsewhere, tough new curbs came into force today in the Czech Republic, throwing the country back into the sort of lockdown it imposed in the spring, amid fears its health system could collapse under a second wave of infections.

The measures include limits on free movement and the closure of many stores, shopping centres and hotels, and will remain in force at least until November 3.

“We have no time to wait,” Prime Minister Andrej Babis said. “The surge is enormous.”

Mr Babis apologised for the huge impact the restrictions will have on everyday life but said if they were not taken “our health system would collapse between November 7-11”.

The measures came into force hours after Spain became the first country in western Europe to report more than one million confirmed Covid-19 infections. France is not far behind with over 930,000 reported cases.

Meanwhile, Poland’s health ministry today reported a record 12,107 new coronavirus infections and 168 deaths, hours before it was expected to announce more restrictions to stem the pandemic.

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