🚥 The latest corona stats for Berlin (tallied Wednesday, 13 January)
New cases in one day: 1,222 (1,070 Tuesday)
Total number of corona deaths: 1,711 (+76 over Tuesday)
🔴 New infections per week: 199.2/100,000 inhabitants (199.9 Tuesday)
Source: Berlin's coronavirus status page
Record death toll in Berlin
Yesterday, a record 76 corona deaths were reported within a 24-hour period - according to the state government's corona dashboard. The 7-day incidence rate remains a notch below 200 - the threshold when the 15km movement restriction would kick in. 1,527 Berliners are currently hospitalised for Covid-19 - 420 of them in intensive care.
Health minister's vaccine plan under attack
In a statement on Wednesday, German health minister Jens Spahn (CDU) defended the decision to order vaccines at the EU level. "Germany acting alone wouldn't have helped, and would have had negative consequences." Conequences such as increased nationalism, he added - sidestepping the fact that the EU seriously screwed up by betting on the wrong horse (the unfinished French Sanofi vaccine.)
Spahn said enough doses of the various vaccines would be available by the summer to immunise the entire population. To date 750,000, people have been immunised in Germany, he said. Berlin mayor Michael Müller (SPD) accused Spahn of giving false hope - pointing out that he had failed to provide binding delivery dates for the required doses.
Drop in traffic jams
The coronavirus lockdowns resulted in less traffic on Berlin's streets in 2020, meaning on average drivers spent 16 fewer hours stuck in gridlock compared to 2019, according to TomTom, which analyses data from its nav-devices every year. Drivers still spent an average of 108 hours in traffic jams last year, more than in any other German city. Worldwide, Moscow drivers spend the most time stuck in traffic - 200 hours per year.
In case you missed it...
Sabine Rennefanz interviewed a doctor working in a British intensive care ward in southern England about the struggles the UK is facing. A sobering read.
That's all for now, folks. Stay safe!
The Berliner Zeitung English team