In Brief: Airport head says Tegel will remain open during the summer

Engelbert Lütke Daldrup, head of Berlin’s airports, said because COVID-19 measures like social distancing complicate procedures like going through security, it will be necessary to keep both Tegel and Schönefeld Airports open to handle the expected bump in passenger numbers.

Image by Dominic Wunderlich from Pixabay

 

By Sylvia Cunningham, Caleb Larson and Monika Müller-Kroll

The head of Berlin’s airports said yesterday that Tegel Airport won’t close this month after all, following a German decision to lift EU-wide travel restrictions by mid-June.

Engelbert Lütke Daldrup told reporters up to 20,000 passengers are expected in Berlin by the end of July.

He said because COVID-19 measures like social distancing complicate procedures like going through security, it will be necessary to keep both Tegel and Schönefeld Airports open to handle the increase.

Just last month, Daldrup announced shareholders had given the green light to close Tegel due to a steep pandemic-induced drop in air travel.

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A new study out of Berlin’s Charité hospital finds there is little evidence to support claims that children are less prone to transmitting the coronavirus than adults.

In a tweet this week, one of Germany’s top virologists, Dr. Christian Drosten, released findings from an updated COVID-19 study, which compared the amount of virus particles — or “viral loads” — present in adult patients with the amount found in children.

Though children generally had lower viral loads, the study concluded they could pass on the coronavirus nonetheless.

The study recommends that officials exercise caution when deciding to open schools and urged for careful monitoring to prevent infection rates from spiking.

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News reports in Sweden say the top epidemiologist is now admitting there was room for improvement in the country’s pandemic strategy. 

Anders Tegnell said in an interview with Swedish radio that more should have been done to fight the spread of COVID-19. He also agreed that too many Swedes have died too soon from the disease.

Sweden, unlike many other European countries, opted out of imposing strict lockdown measures, instead trusting citizens to behave responsibly and practice social distancing.

Tegnell reportedly clarified later that he still stood by that overarching strategy.

According to Johns Hopkins University, Sweden’s COVID-19 mortality rate is among the 10 highest in the world.

 

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