France is considering reimposing restrictions locally in an attempt to avoid nationwide limitations to mitigate the spread of the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19, a government spokesman said following a regular weekly cabinet meeting Wednesday.
The French Riviera on the Mediterranean Coast already has ordered residents to stay within 3½ miles of their home, venture outside no more than one hour, and required stores larger than 5,000 square meters (about 54,000 square feet) closed from 6 p.m. Friday to 6 a.m. Monday for the next two weekends.
The region has three times the number of new reported infections as the national rate, France24 reported.
Government spokesman Gabriel Attal told reporters similar measures could be impose in other areas because of "a worsening situation" that "requires rapid and strong measures."
The northern port city of Dunkirk, likewise Wednesday, was hit with similar restrictions and more regions are to be announced Thursday, French Health Minister Olivier Veran announced.
"The epidemic is worsening across the country," Veran said, according to TheLocal.
Ten of the country's "departments" – similar to states – are in a "very worrying situation," Attal said.
Prime Minister Jean Castex will host a news conference to update the country on the COVID situation Thursday, Attal said.
France's seven-day average of daily new reported infections rose above 21,000 on Wednesday for the first time since Nov. 20, according to Worldometers.info.
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