Latest: Brits in France scramble home to beat new 14-day quarantine

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The latest on the coronavirus pandemic in the United States and around the world.LONDON – The UK government on Thursday added France to its list of countries from which anyone arriving will need to be quarantined for 14 days, causing a rush as Britons abroad rushed home before Saturday to avoid the period of isolation.

An increase in new cases of coronavirus in France prompted the measure, the government said, adding that it was designed to prevent further infections. Britain remains the country in Europe hardest hit by the pandemic, with some 46,700 dead.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps told Sky News on Friday that the government had “no choice but to act.” He estimated that around 160,000 British nationals were in France.

French Secretary of State for European Affairs Clément Beaune warned of “reciprocal measures” and said Paris regretted the British decision.

At least 30,392 people have died in France since the start of the epidemic, and the country has reported 2,669 new cases of coronavirus in the past 24 hours.

As thousands prepared to return to Britain on Friday, many took to social media to voice concerns about planned vacations, canceled flights and difficulties getting home.

Eurotunnel Le Shuttle, which carries road vehicles and passengers through the Channel Tunnel, said the service was “very busy” and there was no additional capacity.

“Don’t show up unless you have a reservation. You won’t get a level crossing, ”he said.

Malta, the Turks and Caicos, the Netherlands and Aruba were also added to Britain’s quarantine list on Thursday, with the Foreign Office advising against “all international travel except essential.”

Britain bought the rights to 340 doses of six experimental vaccines

LONDON – Britain has secured 90 million doses of two vaccines under development to fight COVID-19.

The deals with Novavax, a US biotech company, and Janssen, a Belgian company owned by Johnson & Johnson, mean the UK has now acquired the rights to 340 million doses of six different experimental vaccines as the government seeks to hedge his bets on products that are always tested to see if they are safe and effective.

Kate Bingham, chair of the government vaccine task force, told ITV there was no guarantee any of the vaccines would work “because there has been no vaccine for a human coronavirus .

“So what we’re doing is we’ve picked six of the most promising vaccines out of four different vaccine types and we’re hoping one of them will work. ”

As cases rise in France, Germany establishes testing station near border

BERLIN – German authorities in the western state of Baden-Württemberg have established a new coronavirus testing station at a rest area near the French border after noting a sharp increase in cases in the neighboring country.

The dpa news agency reported on Friday that the center had started testing travelers at the Neuenburg-Ost rest area, across the border from the French town of Chalampe. Travelers from designated risk areas must be tested upon their return to Germany, and the center will also test any others who wish to be screened.

France notified more than 10,000 new confirmed cases last week.

Baden-Württemberg already has test centers at the airports of Stuttgart, Friedrichshafen and Baden-Baden, as well as at the main station in Stuttgart.

The Neuchâtel rest area is the first station of its kind outside of Bavaria, which has been the subject of road tests since the end of July. They have generated so much interest that Bavarian officials have reported a backlog of cases, with around 44,000 people not yet informed of their results, including more than 900 who have tested positive for COVID-19.

Baden-Württemberg says it expects to be able to notify people within four days of their tests.

20-year-old man youngest to die of virus in Australia

SYDNEY – A man in his 20s has become the youngest to die from coronavirus in Australia.

It was among 14 new deaths and 372 new infections reported by health officials in Victoria state on Friday during an outbreak centered in Melbourne, the second largest city.

And Prime Minister Scott Morrison said 188 elderly people had died in the past week as the virus swept through nursing homes in Melbourne. Officials say about 70% of the 375 deaths from the virus in Australia have been in senior care facilities.

Morrison said Australians have high expectations of the services and standards of nursing homes and other facilities like hospitals and schools.

He says, “The days when the system fails, the days when expectations aren’t met, I’m deeply sorry, of course.

He said the country was moving heaven and earth to defeat the virus and that it would eventually win.

India’s death toll now 4th highest, behind US, Brazil and Mexico

NEW DELHI – India’s coronavirus death toll surpassed Britain to become the fourth highest in the world with another record single-day increase in cases on Friday.

According to the Ministry of Health, India has reported 1,007 deaths in the past 24 hours. Its total rose to 48,040 deaths, behind the United States, Brazil and Mexico.

Confirmed cases in India reached 2,461,190 with a one-day high of 64,553 in the past 24 hours. More than 70% of those infected in India have recovered.

The daily increase in newly reported infections was around 15,000 in the first week of July, but climbed to over 50,000 in the first week of August. The ministry cited its testing efforts, with more than 800,000 tests in a single day, bringing cumulative tests to over 26 million.

Health experts say it must be higher, given India’s population of 1.4 billion.

India’s two-month nationwide lockdown at the end of March kept infections low. But it has relaxed and is now widely applied in high risk areas. The new cases have increased after India reopened stores and manufacturing and allowed hundreds of thousands of migrant workers to return home from areas affected by the coronavirus.

Subways, schools and cinemas remain closed.

South Korea sees daily spike in cases

SEOUL, South Korea – South Korea reports 103 new cases of coronavirus. It’s one of the country’s biggest daily jumps for months, and officials worry that infections are spiraling out of control in the capital of Seoul and other major cities as Koreans venture to more and more in public.

Figures released by Korea’s Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Friday brought the number of national cases to 14,873 cases, including 305 deaths.

Eighty-three of the new cases were in the densely populated metropolitan area of ​​Seoul, where authorities have struggled to stem transmissions. Infections have also been reported in other major cities such as Busan, Gwangju and Ulsan.

Friday’s jump was due to local transmissions, which health officials said could worsen due to increased passenger numbers during the summer holiday season.

Private school ordered to close

FRESNO, California – A private school in California has been ordered to close after reopening classrooms in violation of a state health order to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

Fresno County issued a health order against Immanuel de Reedley Schools on Thursday. The K-12 school was told to close its classrooms until the county was taken off the state’s watch list for two weeks.

The school has around 600 students and allowed students to attend classes on Thursdays without masks or social distancing. School administrators and superintendent say they believe student development will suffer if they cannot be taught on campus.

Texas reports fewer hospital patients with coronavirus

AUSTIN, Texas – Texas is reporting less than 7,000 hospitalized patients with coronavirus for the first time in six weeks.

That encouraging sign on Thursday was clouded by questions about the tests as students return to school and college football teams continue their game this fall. Testing has dropped in Texas, a trend seen in the United States, as health experts fear symptom-free patients will not be bothered by long lines and days of waiting for results.

Figures from Texas health officials this week provide a blurry picture of the decline in testing. At one point this week, the infection rate in Texas was as high as 24%, only to drop suddenly to 16% on Thursday.

Officials have not provided an explanation for the wild variation in infection rates.

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