In France, the government is preparing in the coming days to move to “stage 3 – stade 3”, which is the highest alert level on corona virus disease (Covid-19).
Yesterday, March 9, 2020, the Secretary of State in charge of transport, Jean-Baptiste Djebbari, gave some information about the operation of the Paris metro system in case France moved to phase 3.
According to Djebbari’s forecast, due to the effects of the Covid-19 epidemic, many employees will be laid off in public transport companies. He said that the French National Railway Company SNCF and Paris RATP Transport Company are planning to maintain operations in case of widespread Covid-19 epidemic. The plan will be similar to the one that was implemented during the anti-pension reform strike, which will close many metro lines, focusing staff on a number of important routes. In the immediate future, the RATP company will increase measures to prevent corona virus, such as disinfection more often than rail cars.
A minister infected with the virus
To date, there have been 25 deaths in France from Covid-19 and a total of 1,412 people have been infected. Thus France is still the worst country in Europe, just after Italy.
Among those newly infected, there is Culture Minister Frank Riester. According to the minister’s office, Riester last week met for several days in the French House of Representatives, where five lawmakers and two staff were infected. The presidential administration said the minister of culture would continue to work, but work from afar.
Emmanuel Macron’s chief of staff, Patrick Strozda, will also have to work from home because he had contact with a virus-infected person last week.
Regarding sports, after the decision that Paris Saint-Germain – Dortmund match in the C1 Cup will be played tomorrow night at the Parc des Princes but no spectators, French Sports Minister Roxana Maracineanu yesterday announced that the policy was from now until at least April 15 all other sporting events in France will also take place without spectators.
Spain: Number of cases exceeding 1,000
In neighboring Spain, the number of people infected as of yesterday has risen to 1,204. The death toll is even higher than in France, which is 28 people. Within 24 hours, from Sunday to Monday, the number of infections and deaths nearly doubled in Spain. Yesterday, the Madrid government announced the closure of schools in the most affected areas.
According to statistics of AFP news agency, up to 18 hours, international time, across Europe, more than 15,000 people were infected with corona virus, the heaviest in the order are Italy, France, Germany, Spain and Switzerland.