Today's corona news in 60 seconds

+++ Announcement due on new measures +++ Retirement home outbreak +++ Road deaths drop in lockdown +++ The stats +++

Some Kai Uzey Wohlgemuth graffiti in Hamm, North-Rhine Westphalia because something good has to come out of all of this. 
Some Kai Uzey Wohlgemuth graffiti in Hamm, North-Rhine Westphalia because something good has to come out of all of this. imago images

Berlin-Every weekday at 11am come to the Berliner Zeitung English Edition for the latest corona/Covid-19 news at a glance.

This article contains out-of-date information from Wednesday morning. For the latest news on the lockdown coming Monday GO HERE.

🚥 First, the official corona stats for Berlin (tallied Tuesday, 27 October)

🟢 R number: 0.97 (1.19 Monday)

🔴 New infections per week: 137.2 / 100,000 inhabitants (131.8 Monday)

🟢 Share of Berlin ICUs occupied by Covid-19 patients: 9.8 per cent (9.2 per cent Monday)

Total number of corona deaths: 251 (+ 0)

Source: Berlin's coronavirus status page 

The lowdown...

Will today bring a new lockdown?

Chancellor Angela Merkel has moved a corona meeting with the heads of Germany's Bundesländer, or states, to today (Wednesday 28 October) from Friday. She reportedly plans on suggesting the following restrictions from next Wednesday (4 November) until the end of the month so that families and friends can safely meet again for Christmas:

  • Members of one household can only meet with people from one other household in public, while private gatherings will not be allowed.
  • Restaurants, bars, pubs and hotels would all have to close.
  • All entertainment venues, from theatres to amusement parks, and cinemas to sex work facilities would be closed.
  • Recreational and amateur sports facilities would be closed too, but there's no word on professional football matches.
  • Schools and kindergartens would remain open but with extra safety measures at state  level.
  • Shops would stay open too, but only one customer per 25 sq m of shop space at a time.
  • People will be advised against tourism and non-essential travel, and the ban on domestic tourist accommodation within Germany (Beherbergungsverbot) would be upheld.

These are just some of the measures set to be discussed today and with major disagreements between some regional bosses over what measures are appropriate, who knows what will come out of the negotiations.

Senat extends corona rules

While we await news of new nationwide measures, Berlin politicians yesterday extended the Sperrstunde curfew on bars and restaurants between 11pm and 6am for another two weeks, until 14 November. Limits on indoor gatherings are also incoming from this Saturday - a maximum of 300 people will be allowed to come together instead of the previous 1,000, and only 500 people outside instead of the previous 5,000. Another session is planned for this week  following the outcome of Merkel's meeting.

Retirement home outbreak

Six senior residents of a nursing home in Mariendorfer Damm tested positive for Covid-19 and had to be transported to hospital for treatment. The fire brigade said one patient was transported in an intensive care vehicle fitted with a ventilator. The patients' conditions were checked after the arrival of emergency services, but there have been no updates since.

Traffic accidents at record low thanks to lockdown

In some good news on an otherwise tense day, Germany's Federal Statistics Office has revealed that clearer roads as a result of people staying home has led to a dramatic drop in road accidents. 670,000 accidents were recorded between March and June this year, 26 per cent down on the numbers in the same period last year. And the number of those incidents which proved fatal was the lowest since German reunification – 880 people died in road accidents in the period studied, compared to 1,069 in the same four months last year.

In case you missed it...

Do you need a laugh after reading all that? Luckily for you, we've compiled a list of all of Berlin's new BER airport's most embarrassing fails from its nine-year delay.

That's all for now folks. Stay safe!


The Berliner Zeitung English team

P.S. We're on Twitter and Facebook.