UPDATE: Stricter mask obligation and new rules

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The infection figures have increased strongly in Austria in autumn. From 23 October new rules for handling the virus will apply. These include restrictions on persons at meetings as well as the wearing of a mouth and nose protector.

The Austrian government is responding to the rising infection figures by tightening up measures. Events are mainly affected by this.

Extra-professional meetings are to be limited to a maximum of six adults indoors and twelve outside. This applies everywhere – in restaurants, at yoga classes, in dance schools, at birthday parties and weddings. There are exceptions for funerals and professional meetings. Because the authorities are not allowed to control this in private premises, Chancellor Sebastian Kurz (ÖVP) appealed to the population’s sense of responsibility to abide by the rules there as well.

Public events such as sporting and cultural events may continue to take place with a maximum number of 1,000 people inside (previously 1,500), 1,500 people outside (previously 3,000), but only with permanently assigned seats, mouth and nose protection during the entire event and without service. An official permit is required. In the catering trade, a prevention concept is now required for events with 50 or more people.

In amateur sport, “business as usual” should apply for the time being. The number of participants necessary for the sport – in soccer about eleven plus eleven plus reserve players and necessary personnel (coaches, coaches, referees etc.) – is allowed. For professional sports events with an appropriate prevention concept, up to 100 athletes plus coaches, support staff and other personnel required for the event are permitted indoors and up to 200 in the open air.

Previously – and these rules will remain in place for the time being – a closing hour of 1.00 a.m. was already in force. This also applies to closed events in privately rented clubs and venues.

Wearing the mouth-and-nose protection now applies in the following areas:

  • During events
  • In all stores
  • In the service sector (including health care)
  • Outdoors also at markets and fairs
  • In schools outside the own class
  • In government offices
  • In bars and restaurant for staff and for guests, as long as they are not sitting at their table
  • Source: APA and orf.at
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