Although many countries around the world have been trending towards reopening amid COVID-19, several European countries are actually taking steps backward into another lockdown. As fall and winter approach, Europe has seen a worrying increase in cases that are prompting partial lockdowns and more social distancing measures.
The Czech Republic, for example, has one of the region’s highest new infection rates and will introduce a partial lockdown for three weeks where schools, bars, and clubs will be closed. The Netherlands also recently announced a partial lockdown, with masks becoming mandatory again in public indoor spaces. In Italy, a new decree is banning school trips, amateur contact sports, and parties over six people.
Hospitalizations are also on the rise in places like France. In Paris, 90 percent of intensive care beds may be filled by the end of next week, the BBC reports, and President Emmanuel Macron just announced curfews in Paris, Aix-Marseille, Grenoble, Montpellier, Toulouse, Saint Etienne, Lille, Rouen, and Lyon between 9 PM and 6 AM. London also moved from “medium” to “high” alert, meaning Londoners are now banned from convening with those from other households indoors, including at pubs and restaurants.
Even Germany, which has handled the pandemic well, is seeing a concerning rise in numbers, with over 5,000 new cases yesterday.