France in isolation, prime minister: Cases today patients and victims tomorrow
French Prime Minister Jean Castex today announced new measures to stop the spread of the coronavirus as cases increase across the country.
"The second wave is here" and "the situation is dire," Castex told a news conference Thursday as he announced the extension of coronavirus prevention measures to 38 other administrative departments across France.
The new measures are expected to take effect at midnight on Friday. The prime minister said the measures would affect 46 million people, or two-thirds of the French population.
"Clearly, the coming weeks will be difficult, our hospital services will be put to the test," Castex said.
The prime minister said the measures would remain in place for six weeks, adding that the situation would be assessed next week and that curfew rules could be tightened if necessary.
"If we fail to stop the pandemic, we will face a serious situation and will have to envisage much tougher measures," Castex said.
According to the Prime Minister, the incidence rate, which means the number of confirmed cases of Covid-19 per 100,000 inhabitants, increased by 40% in a week, to reach 251 in the national territory. The reproduction rate of the virus is about 1.35, which, in concrete terms, means doubling the number of cases in fifteen days.
"The circulation of the virus is at an extremely high level," said Jean Castex. He warned the situation would be more critical in November. The prime minister has made a frightening prediction, saying that "the death toll will continue to rise." The new cases today are the patients of tomorrow's hospital and unfortunately sometimes the day after tomorrow ".
According to the government's decision, fines of 135 euros will be applied to violators, while repeat offenders can face fines of up to 3,750 euros. About 12,000 police officers and gendarmes, in addition to municipal police teams, were deployed to enforce the initial curfew.