The number of infections is so dramatic that there seems to be no alternative to a hard cut. From Tuesday, trading will be closed and the exit restrictions will be extended to 24 hours.
Every day at lunchtime, new, ominous numbers arrive: 9,586 new cases of infection were reported from Thursday to Friday. 3,922 People are in hospital because of the coronavirus, including 567 in intensive care units.
According to the current report of the Corona traffic light commission, the previous week could only 23 Percent of cases are assigned to a source. In Styria and Upper Austria there are only 12 or. 13 Percent. Contact tracing is over.
But it’s not just the daily values that break records: the seven-day incidence is more than (depending on the reference date) 550. As a reminder: from 50 a country is classified as a risk area.
Even in a federal state like Carinthia, which until recently was considered a “model student” in fighting pandemics, the situation is getting worse.
In Vorarlberg’s hospitals, people already speak of a “dramatic situation”. A triage in the coming days – that is, the selection of patients according to urgency – “cannot be ruled out”.
In short: there seems to be no alternative to the hard lockdown. And the government will announce it on Saturday. Chancellor Sebastian Kurz will give a press conference at 4.30 p.m. together with Vice Chancellor Werner Kogler, Health Minister Rudolf Anschober and Interior Minister Karl Nehammer.
No one officially confirmed what was to come on Friday – but the indications condensed into the following scenario: The lockdown should apply from Tuesday to (probably) December 8th.
As with the first lockdown in the spring, a ban on entry is to be imposed on all shops. Exceptions are grocery stores, drug stores and pharmacies as well as other areas of basic services such as banks and post offices. From December 8th – if the number of infections allows it – will be unlocked again. After all, Christmas is just around the corner – appropriate purchases should be possible.
The new rules
The catering has been closed since November 3rd. The companies receive a turnover replacement of 80 percent. A similar compensation pact was still being negotiated for retailers on Friday. The key points: 40 percent of sales are to be replaced, the whole thing is capped at 800,000 euros. Everything else would not be affordable, they say. The trade association demands 80 percent.
Exit restrictions from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. have also been in effect since November 3rd. This is to be expanded, as the KURIER learned – to 24 hours. The five exceptions still apply – they are laid down in the Covid-19 Measures Act.
One should then only leave one’s own apartment for the whole day to 1. avert immediate dangers, 2. to help or look after others, 3. to cover basic daily needs (shopping etc.), 4. for professional purposes 5. for “physical and psychological recovery”, such as walking, sports etc.
Rush is feared
In the background it was heard that the Greens wanted to implement the lockdown at the weekend. Your argument: The announcement of the “lockdown light” led to a rush on the catering trade in the last days of October – and thus to increased numbers of infections.
Something similar is feared today, Saturday, for retailers. “The current infection numbers are the calculation that people quickly marched into the guest gardens on November 1st and 2nd,” said the KURIER.
The ÖVP and the Greens are likely to have agreed on the point that it now needs a “hard cut”. As an insider emphasizes: “It no longer makes sense to announce tightening up slice by slice. We make a fool of ourselves towards the population. “
Some details of the “hard cut” were still open on Friday evening: The government negotiated whether the schools should remain open or whether the under-14s should also switch to distance learning.
In this case, the tough cuts do not need the prior approval of the Parliament’s main committee, which is intended per se. According to the Corona traffic light commission, there is a “risk of delay”.
The experts refer to prognoses according to which there is “a high probability that the signal value of 33 Percent ”- in two countries even from 50 Percent. “From this a critical situation for the health system across the country can be deduced,” said Thursday’s decision.