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Coronavirus pandemic: Bonn toughens coronavirus rules

Coronavirus pandemic : Bonn toughens coronavirus rules

A tougher coronavirus ordinance goes into effect on Saturday, December 19 for residents of Bonn. It includes new rules concerning fireworks and firecrackers, civil marriage ceremonies and funerals.

The city of Bonn issued a new general ordinance on Friday that toughens the country's coronavirus rules. According to the city, the order will go into effect this Saturday, December 19. The new ordinance states that it is forbidden to light firecrackers or fireworks in all public places, streets and in all public facilities between 5 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 31, and 6 a.m. on Friday, Jan. 1. The carrying of firecrackers and fireworks is also strictly prohibited. To enforce the new ordinance, the city said there would be increased monitoring and inspections by police.

Weddings and funerals: There are also changes for weddings and funerals. A civil marriage ceremony may only be attended by five guests instead of ten. And champagne receptions in public places after the wedding ceremony are prohibited. At funerals, the maximum number of guests allowed is 25 instead of 50.

The reason for the tougher restrictions is the increasing incidence rate, which has climbed to more than 227 per 100,000 inhabitants in Bonn. 55 people died in connection with Covid-19, two more than the previous day. Bonn hospitals currently have 173 Covid-19 patients. 131 patients are being treated in normal wards, 42 are in intensive care units, and 29 are on ventilators.

Senior citizen home closed: Due to staff who have fallen ill with Covid-19, the Malteser Senior Center Marienheim in Rheinbach, which has been under criticism for months, was closed on Friday. As the General-Anzeiger learned, the last of the 47 residents left the facility on Friday. They were accommodated in other senior citizen homes. Authorities could not say how many cases of coronavirus had hit that facility. Most recently in July, Rhein-Sieg district authorities had identified a long list of deficiencies in the home for senior citizens. In the report, obtained by the GA, it mentions glaring deficiencies in cleanliness, a desolate personnel situation and a backlog of needed renovations. It is unclear how long the operation of the Rheinbach senior citizen home will be suspended.

Easing of regulations: NRW Health Minister Karl-Josef Laumann (CDU) expects the current coronavirus restrictions to last beyond Jan. 10. "As of today, I do not yet see that there can be any great easing of the measures on January 10," Laumann told the "General-Anzeiger." However, retirement homes and nursing homes are to generally remain open: "There are no bans on visits to senior citizen and nursing homes as there were in the spring, and there will be no more with me," Laumann emphasized.

Science: An international team of 20 virologists, epidemiologists and pandemic modelers pleads for "a synchronized containment strategy" in Europe in the scientific journal "The Lancet". A maximum of ten new infections per million inhabitants per day should be the declared EU goal. Only then could the economic and psychological situation of societies become more relaxed. Even if one country has a far-reaching lockdown but a neighboring country does not, there is the threat of "a game of ping-pong" of renewed introductions of the coronavirus.

(Orig. text: bau, qm, ww, pfu. Translation: ck)