AOn Tuesday, the Upper Bavarian district of Berchtesgadener Land imposed a lockdown. You may only leave your own apartment with a “valid reason”. Schools and restaurants are closed, vacationers had to leave the region by Tuesday afternoon. The drastic measures were imposed because of the seven-day incidence of Corona-New infections according to the figures from the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) are now 262. Better to impose a lockdown too early than too late is also the maxim of Bavaria’s Prime Minister Markus Söder (CSU), who announced a new “dark red” limit value in a government statement in the Bavarian state parliament on Wednesday. If there are more than 100 new infections per 100,000 inhabitants in the past seven days, restaurants will have to close at 9 p.m., events will be limited to 50 participants.
After the alpine Berchtesgadener Land in the extreme south-east of the republic, the Lower Saxony middle center Delmenhorst ranks second in the nationwide infection ranking of cities and districts with a seven-day incidence of 205. A spokesman for the FAZ described whether there will be a lockdown in the neighboring city of Bremen as “pure speculation”. He pointed out that new stricter measures have been in place in Delmenhorst since Tuesday. This includes a curfew for restaurants from 11 p.m. to 6 a.m., the restriction of private meetings to ten people from a maximum of two households and a mask requirement not only in the pedestrian zone, but also in front of and behind the train station and in customer parking lots. Until further notice, Delmenhorst will wait for the effects of the measures decided on Monday and reassess the situation by the middle of next week.
“Don’t invent something new every day”
In its comparatively liberal corona policy, Delmenhorst has the backing of Lower Saxony’s Prime Minister Stephan Weil (SPD). This rejects calls for a lockdown based on the Berchtesgaden model. Weil told NDR on Tuesday that he saw “reasons” for the reaction in Berchtesgadener Land, but also “reasons” for the concept in Delmenhorst. Weil said schools and daycare centers have not yet turned out to be sources of infection and should remain open for the time being. In addition, sealing off in a city is not as possible as in rural areas. Lower Saxony’s government spokeswoman Anke Pörksen told the FAZ on Wednesday that the Prime Minister saw crisis management in the city of Delmenhorst “in good hands”. Lower Saxony is not planning any new limit values for the time being, as in Bavaria, which would result in binding new restrictions if exceeded throughout the state.
Bavaria rushes forward, Lower Saxony is waiting. This is how the different approaches of the two countries can be described. But even Hesse sees no need to introduce a new limit value, for example a seven-day incidence of 100. “You can’t invent something new every day,” said Hesse’s government spokesman Michael Busser to the FAZ. Hesse’s “escalation concept” was only updated on Monday. This provides limit values of 20, 35, 50 and 75. The cities of Frankfurt, Offenbach and Kassel, however, are above the 100 mark.
Frankfurt, which now has a seven-day incidence of 124, does not want to hear about any new measures. “The new, tightened package of measures has only been in force for a few days and is initially valid until October 31. It usually takes ten days to two weeks for the effects of the measures to show up in the number of infected people, “said René Gottschalk, head of the Frankfurt health department. There are currently no considerations about a lockdown for Frankfurt. A spokesman for the city of Offenbach, for which the RKI found a seven-day incidence of 129 on Wednesday.
City and municipality federation against new limit values
The German Association of Cities and Municipalities (DStGB) has also spoken out against a new limit of 100 new infections per 100,000 inhabitants in the previous seven days. “The population should not be confronted with ever new and additional limit values,” said DStGB spokesman Alexander Handschuh on request. The limit values of 35 and 50 should remain the basis for decision-making. In addition, one must respond to the respective local situation. It should play a role “whether what is happening can be narrowed down or whether it is diffuse, how the contact tracking still works and whether there is a threat of overloading the health facilities”. It was correct, said Handschuh, that rules for exceeding the incidence values of 35 and 50 are set nationwide. Further measures should be taken on site in coordination with the health authorities and state authorities.
In Bavaria, state politics is the driving force behind the restrictions, especially in the person of Prime Minister Söder. “The Free State determines the basis,” says a spokeswoman for the city of Schweinfurt to the FAZ. So far, a new, generally applicable order from Munich with the new limit value of 100 announced by Söder has not yet been issued. If that probably happens on Thursday, the Lower Franconian city will have to react. Schweinfurt currently has a seven-day incidence of 112. In Weiden in the Upper Palatinate and in Augsburg, too, pub-goers will soon have to leave the restaurant at 9 p.m. Weiden, which ranks second in Bavaria with a seven-day incidence of 131, wants to dispense with more drastic restrictions for the time being, Mayor Jens Meyer (SPD) said in a message: “My goal is to curb the infection rate in pastures now. At the moment I don’t see any reason for a lockdown. “