Thousands of volunteers attend 'COVID-secure' concert trial in Germany

Jimmy Nsubuga
·2-min read
22 August 2020, Saxony, Leipzig: The German pop singer Tim Bendzko performs during a large-scale experiment of the University Medicine Halle/Saale in the Arena Leipzig. Around 2200 visitors take part in the experiment under the title "Restart-19". The scientists want to use sensors and other aids to monitor their walking paths, and fluorescent disinfectant is to make visible which surfaces are touched particularly often. The flight of aerosols - the smallest mixtures of particles that can carry the virus - will also be tracked. The aim is to develop a mathematical model that can be used to assess the risk of corona outbreak after a major event in a hall. Photo: Hendrik Schmidt/dpa-Zentralbild/ZB (Photo by Hendrik Schmidt/picture alliance via Getty Images)
German pop singer Tim Bendzko performs during a large-scale concert experiment (Picture: Getty)

Thousands of volunteers have attended a concert in Germany to help organisers track how coronavirus spreads at large events held indoors.

In total 4,000 people turned up to watch singer-songwriter Tim Bendzko perform at the Leipzig arena on Saturday morning.

The University Hospital of Halle’s RESTART-19 transmission risk assessment aims to test what will happen in three different situations at a live event.

The first situation is without social distancing using two doors, the second is using eight doors and a single space between seats and the third is only allowing a capacity if 2,000 people with a five feet distance.

LEIPZIG, GERMANY - AUGUST 22: Participants wearing FFP2 protective face masks watch singer Tim Bendzko perform in the RESTART-19 Covid transmission risk assessment study in a concert setting at an indoor arena during the coronavirus pandemic on August 22, 2020 in Leipzig, Germany. The study, organized by the University Hospital of Halle (Saale), simulates a live concert venue with several thousand audience members in three different scenarios in order to develop risk reduction measures for large events. Participants wear tracer devices to track their movements and sensors measure aerosol currents in the arena. All participants had to undergo a Covid-19 test within the last 48 hours and test negative in order to take part.  (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)
Participants wear FFP2 protective face masks (Picture: Getty)
22 August 2020, Saxony, Leipzig: The German pop singer Tim Bendzko (in front) performs with a band on stage during a large-scale experiment of the University Medical School Halle/Saale in the Arena Leipzig. Around 2200 visitors take part in the experiment entitled "Restart-19", in which the pop singer Tim Bendzko performs at a concert. The scientists want to use sensors and other aids to monitor walking paths and fluorescent disinfectant should make visible which surfaces are often touched. The researchers also hope to track the flight of aerosols - the smallest mixtures of particles that could carry the virus. The aim is to develop a mathematical model with which the risk of a corona outbreak after a major event in a hall can be assessed. Photo: Hendrik Schmidt/dpa-Zentralbild/dpa (Photo by Hendrik Schmidt/picture alliance via Getty Images)
Tim Bendzko (in front) performs with a band on stage (Picture: Getty)

The results will be used to reduce the risk of coronavirus transmissions when large scale events are held again.

Volunteers aged 18-50, who had to pass a coronavirus test in the past two days, wore masks and a device around their neck to track their movements.

They also had their temperatures checked prior to entering the 12,000 seat arena.

22 August 2020, Saxony, Leipzig: Test persons of a large-scale experiment of the University Medicine Halle/Saale are standing at the entrance in front of the Arena Leipzig. Around 2200 visitors take part in the experiment entitled "Restart-19", in which pop singer Tim Bendzko will perform. The scientists want to use sensors and other aids to monitor walking paths and fluorescent disinfectant is to make visible which surfaces are often touched. They also want to trace the flight of aerosols - the smallest mixtures of particles that could carry the virus. The aim is to develop a mathematical model with which the risk of a corona outbreak after a major event in a hall can be assessed. Photo: Hendrik Schmidt/dpa-Zentralbild/dpa (Photo by Hendrik Schmidt/picture alliance via Getty Images)
Volunteers had their temperature taken before entry (Picture: Getty)
22 August 2020, Saxony, Leipzig: Test persons of a large-scale experiment of the University Medicine Halle/Saale are standing at the entrance in front of the Arena Leipzig. Around 2200 visitors take part in the experiment entitled "Restart-19", in which pop singer Tim Bendzko will perform. The scientists want to use sensors and other aids to monitor walking paths and fluorescent disinfectant is to make visible which surfaces are often touched. They also want to trace the flight of aerosols - the smallest mixtures of particles that could carry the virus. The aim is to develop a mathematical model with which the risk of a corona outbreak after a major event in a hall can be assessed. Photo: Hendrik Schmidt/dpa-Zentralbild/dpa (Photo by Hendrik Schmidt/picture alliance via Getty Images)
The scientists want to use sensors and other aids to monitor walking paths (Picture: Getty)
LEIPZIG, GERMANY - AUGUST 22: Participants wearing FFP2 protective face masks hold up their tracer devices at the RESTART-19 Covid transmission risk assessment study in a concert setting at an indoor arena during the coronavirus pandemic on August 22, 2020 in Leipzig, Germany. The study, organized by the University Hospital of Halle (Saale), simulates a live concert venue with several thousand audience members in three different scenarios in order to develop risk reduction measures for large events. Participants wear tracer devices to track their movements and sensors measure aerosol currents in the arena. All participants had to undergo a Covid-19 test within the last 48 hours and test negative in order to take part.  (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)
Volunteers hold up their tracer devices (Picture: Getty)
LEIPZIG, GERMANY - AUGUST 22: A worker checks the temperature of a participant registering for the RESTART-19 Covid transmission risk assessment study at an indoor arena during the coronavirus pandemic on August 22, 2020 in Leipzig, Germany. The study, organized by the University Hospital of Halle (Saale), simulates a live concert venue with several thousand audience members in three different scenarios in order to develop risk reduction measures for large events. All participants had to undergo a Covid-19 test within the last 48 hours and test negative in order to take part.  (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)
A worker checks the temperature of a participant (Picture: Getty)

High-touch areas at the event will be marked due to volunteers being given fluorescent hand sanitiser so researchers can see their habits.

Researchers will also monitor what role vapours play in the spread of COVID-19 by using fog machines.

Results from the event, which cost around €990,000 (£892,000), are expected in October, the Guardian reported.

LEIPZIG, GERMANY - AUGUST 22: Participants wearing FFP2 protective face masks take part in the RESTART-19 Covid transmission risk assessment study in a concert setting during a break for concessions at an indoor arena during the coronavirus pandemic on August 22, 2020 in Leipzig, Germany. The study, organized by the University Hospital of Halle (Saale), simulates a live concert venue with several thousand audience members in three different scenarios in order to develop risk reduction measures for large events. Participants wear tracer devices to track their movements and sensors measure aerosol currents in the arena. All participants had to undergo a Covid-19 test within the last 48 hours and test negative in order to take part.  (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)
The study simulates a live concert venue with several thousand audience members (Picture: Getty)
LEIPZIG, GERMANY - AUGUST 22: Participants wearing FFP2 protective face masks take part in the RESTART-19 Covid transmission risk assessment study in a concert setting during a break for concessions at an indoor arena during the coronavirus pandemic on August 22, 2020 in Leipzig, Germany. The study, organized by the University Hospital of Halle (Saale), simulates a live concert venue with several thousand audience members in three different scenarios in order to develop risk reduction measures for large events. Participants wear tracer devices to track their movements and sensors measure aerosol currents in the arena. All participants had to undergo a Covid-19 test within the last 48 hours and test negative in order to take part.  (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)
The event will help develop risk reduction measures for large events (Picture: Getty)

The number of new daily cases in Germany has been rising steadily since early July and has accelerated in recent weeks, driven by partying and people returning from holiday in countries where there is a high risk of catching the virus.

On Thursday, the number of confirmed cases climbed by 1,707 to 228,621, marking the biggest daily increase since April 26.

Deputy director of the Robert Koch Institute for infectious diseases has urged people to do everything to help reverse the trend.

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