Paris mandates outdoor mask wearing amid COVID surge
Parisians will be required to wear masks outdoors starting Friday as part of an effort to stymie the spread of COVID-19 driven by the Omicron variant, French police announced Wednesday.
Driving the news: France reported 208,000 new infections Wednesday, setting a new national and European record, Reuters reported.
- On Tuesday, France had reported 180,000 new infections, itself also a record, per Reuters.
- "We have never experienced a situation like this," French health minister Olivier Véran said during a press briefing Wednesday, Le Monde reported.
Details: The new mandate will apply to all citizens over the age of 11, with several exceptions permitted, including for cyclists, people participating in a sporting activity, or traveling inside vehicles, per the statement.
- The rule will also apply to Paris airports Charles de Gaulle, Le Bourget and Paris-Orly.
The big picture: As for the rest of France, authorities in several regions have imposed requirements to wear masks outdoors during New Year's Eve celebrations, Le Monde reported.
- French police also announced Wednesday that bars in Paris will be ordered to close at 2am on Jan. 1 and Jan. 2.