France and Melbourne make masks mandatory amid global surge in coronavirus cases

France and Melbourne make masks mandatory amid global surge in coronavirus cases

A research team in South Korea have found that 10-year-old children are beginning to actively transmit COVID-19 as much as adults do, The Washington Post newspaper reported. The results of a large-scale study revealed that children under 10 years of age are about half less as likely to infect others with the virus. Experts attribute this to the fact that they exhale less air than adults and they are smaller in stature. Therefore, these children exhale closer to the ground, which reduces the likelihood of virus transmission. 

In contrast, adolescents from 10 to 19 years old are even more likely to infect others than adults. This is because they are taller than younger children, but their hygiene habits are same. Scientists assume that teenagers communicate more often with their peers and therefore have more chances of transmitting the virus.

Meantime, according to the data from Johns Hopkins University, reported cases of COVID-19 infection worldwide reached 14.46 million. Most of the new infections were reported in the United States, Brazil, India and South Africa. The global coronavirus death toll exceeded 605,000. Almost a quarter of this number falls on the U.S.

The most active spike in coronavirus cases is observed in southern U.S. states. The authorities in Florida, Texas and Arizona for a long time delayed the introduction of quarantine and making masks mandatory.

France is introducing a fine of 135 euros (US$155 or 64,000 tenge) for failure to comply with a new decree to wear a mask in public places starting today, July 20. According to French Health Ministry, the new obligation will apply to shopping centers, indoor markets, museums, banks and parking lots. In recent days, there has been a sharp increase in the number of COVID-19 cases in the west of France with a large number of clusters of infection. Coronavirus statistics is also beginning to deteriorate in the Ile-de-France region around Paris. According to the latest data from French Health Ministry, in total, the COVID-19 infected more than 174,000 people and killed more than 30,000 patients in the country.

Wearing masks will be made compulsory for people out in public in Melbourne, the capital city of Australian state of Victoria, from July 22. The government authorities have made this decision due to the increase in COVID-19 cases. In addition, Australia is introducing additional restrictions on staying in the interstate border zones effective tomorrow, July 21. The country reported a total of more than 11,000 confirmed coronavirus cases.

Hong Kong is seeing a rising infection rates in the country. More than 100 new coronavirus cases were reported there in the last 24 hours. 180,000 civil servants will be working remotely. The stabilization of the epidemiological situation had been observed in Hong Kong in the last three weeks. However, from July 16, the number of infections began to rise again. Hong Kong banned group gatherings of more than four people, as well as closed gyms, swimming pools, clubs, cinemas and the local Disneyland.