Corona era folklore festivals: harmless fun or super spread?
Munich / Straubing – Two years without folk festivals, two years without roller coasters, shooting ranges and fun in a beer tent. In the third year of Corona, everything is now more relaxed: you can celebrate again and sway.
The incidence of the crown is increasing in the Free State. Is there a link between folklore festivals and the current spread of the virus?
Municipalities and clinics are concerned about the coming weeks. In Munich and Straubing, for example, the folklore festival Oktoberfest and Gäuboden are under construction.
“The public mood is conducive to the organization of folklore festivals,” says Achim Sing, spokesman for the Bavarian Association of Cities.
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This is the expectation of citizens, but also of owners and showmen who have long been unable to do business. “It has to be respected.” But of course there is a concern that the folklore festivals will become popularizing events.
In the Mid-Frankish town and district of Erlangen-Höchstadt, the incidence increased sharply in the good week after Bergkirchweih in June. This is the result of data from the Robert Koch Institute. Nine days after the festival ended, the city’s value had more than tenfold, and its value had tripled in the district.
It cannot be said with certainty whether there is a link. But: “The suspicion is obvious,” says Sing. In Wunsiedel in the Fichtelgebirge, the number of cases has recently increased sharply – there has also been speculation about folklore festivals as the cause.
Ministry of Health cautious, politicians refer to personal responsibility
The Ministry of Health, referring to the State Health Authority (LGL), states that “a diffuse pandemic can still be assumed”.
Regional and time-limited accumulations are occasionally observed. Even though experience shows that serious events do not necessarily lead to an increased number of infections, there is always an increased risk of transmitting infectious diseases with any large gathering of people, especially in confined spaces.
Politicians refer to the personal responsibility of citizens. The municipalities are not entitled to any restrictions, says Sing of the city council. In view of the high number of corona infections, the ministry also urges citizens to take voluntary preventive measures and take personal responsibility, especially in regions where the number of infections is currently high.
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“Proven hygiene rules are and will remain important: keep your distance, observe hygiene, air regularly, wear a mask where many people meet in a confined space or in a room, use the Corona alert app – it’s all that anyone can do without much effort. can do it. Everyone should take their own responsibility for themselves and other people seriously, ”the spokesman said.
Fear of overload in clinics
In Munich, Mayor Dieter Reiter (63, SPD) gave the green light to Wiesn 2022 at the end of April – not without prior consultation with Federal Health Minister Karl Lauterbach (SPD).
As always, from September 17 to October 3, the celebrations will be held in tents with thousands of guests. Reiter would prefer to see Oktoberfest with the 3G rule, i.e. for those who have been vaccinated, those who have recovered or tested, and even better with 1G only for those who have just been tested.
But under federal and state guidelines, it’s not legally possible, he said in April. It could only be “Wiesn all or not at all.” The current federal infection protection law is in effect until September 23, which will then be open.
Bamberg County wants to arm itself out of fear of clinically overloaded: in the past four weeks, coronation failures among nursing staff have doubled to more than ten percent, and among doctors to five percent, according to a statement.
The situation is exacerbated by the relocation of patients from overburdened clinics in the Nuremberg agglomeration to rural areas.
Cover photo: Armin Weigel / dpa