The country chiefs, who are mostly black, are still resisting a renewed lockdown – but Health Minister Wolfgang Mückstein wants to use the summit on Friday to advertise the tough measure. His main argument will be the tense situation in the intensive care units. According to the forecast consortium, the critical value could be reached as early as December 1st. Three federal states in particular are affected: Upper Austria, Salzburg and Vorarlberg. In other federal states where the vaccination rate is very high, such as Burgenland, the situation is much less dramatic. LH Hans Peter Doskozil is unlikely to have an argumentation basis for such a drastic measure among his own voters and will resist it accordingly at the summit.
So a kind of partial lockdown would be possible, which only takes effect in particularly stressed federal states. That would then mainly affect the West. A night curfew will also be discussed again on Friday. The first results should then be announced at 12.30 p.m.
In Vienna, significantly stricter measures have been in place for a long time than in the federal government, such as an FFP2 obligation for customers in the entire retail sector. According to the regulation now in hand, this will be extended further from Friday. So there is an FFP2 obligation in all indoor spaces apart from the private area – also in the workplace and thus also for the employees in the trade, even if they have been vaccinated or have recovered. This obligation applies in general, however, also in offices, provided that there is contact with other people, unless there are structural protective measures on site. For guests in the catering industry, the way to and from the table will only be able to be done with a mask – and the staff there too will have to wear FFP2 masks again without exception. The same applies to the staff of body-hugging service providers.
In addition, from Friday in Vienna a 2Gplus regulation will apply to customers in certain areas: This means that night-time restaurants and events from 25 people can only be visited if vaccinated or recovered people also have a negative PCR test result. In exceptional cases, an antigen test may be sufficient, namely if a PCR test was demonstrably not available or was not evaluated in a timely manner. In addition, the obligation does not apply if a Covid disease has been survived within the past 40 days. The rule for children is also stricter than in the federal government: For six to eleven year olds, the so-called “ninja pass” (school tests) must be presented as proof of 2G (nationwide requirement: only from 12 years of age); a fully glued pass (3 tests per week) is also valid on weekends. In Vienna, 12 to 15-year-olds have to present a 2.5 G certificate, whereby the PCR test is valid for 48 hours from acceptance (in the federal government the ninja pass is sufficient until the end of the ninth school year, after which you have to submit a 2G Present proof).
In Lower Austria, the FFP2 obligation has been tightened since Wednesday. Customers in the hospitality industry have to wear the mask on their way to and from the square; guests in the interiors of cultural institutions (such as theaters, cinemas as well as concert halls and arenas) now have to use this higher-quality mask. Such protection must also be used when dealing with parties.
In Burgenland, FFP2 masks must also be worn again from Wednesday in all publicly accessible rooms – for example at events, in public transport, in the hospitality industry and for body-friendly services. The mask requirement also applies to accommodation providers, leisure and cultural institutions and trade fairs.
In Upper Austria – since Monday – a general FFP2 mask requirement has been in effect indoors, in restaurants this also applies up to the seat (exception: mouth and nose protection for 6- to 14-year-olds). Discos and night clubs have to close by December 6th. All events are also prohibited until December 6th – with the exception of those in the “professional culture and sports sector”. After this point in time, the closed areas should be open again to people with 2G verification. Advent markets can take place, but FFP2 mask requirements and a ban on consumption apply. Takeaway is possible.
In the federal state of Salzburg, the FFP2 mask requirement has been in effect since Monday for all workers with customer contact or when the distance to colleagues is less than one meter. Even with body-hugging service providers such as hairdressers, in restaurants and generally accessible areas of accommodation providers, in leisure and cultural facilities as well as in markets – the FFP2 mask is also mandatory outdoors. Food and drinks in pubs may only be consumed while sitting. In addition, 2G proof is required for museums, cultural exhibition houses, libraries, archives and on occasional markets such as the Christmas market. Alcohol consumption is forbidden there.
The stricter FFP2 rule has been in force in Styria since Wednesday. Such a high-quality protective mask must always be worn in every closed room if another person who does not live in the same household is present. This also applies here to the workplace, provided that physical contact with other people cannot be ruled out. Furthermore, the FFP2 mask requirement also applies in the “Green Mark” in restaurants, when entering and leaving the restaurant and when going to the toilet.
In Carinthia, it will be tightened on Friday, the FFP2 obligation is also required here “at the place of work”. In Carinthia, too, consumption in restaurants will only be allowed at the seat in the future, and a mask must be worn when standing up – as is the case in hotels, where masks are to be worn in all generally accessible areas. The mask is also mandatory for customers in the areas of culture and leisure, exceptions should only be made for wet areas or when using fitness equipment.
In Tyrol, an FFP2 mask has also been mandatory indoors at the workplace since Wednesday – if more than one person is in the room. There are exceptions to this if “other suitable protective measures” (such as Plexiglas walls) are available – or the practice of the profession is made impossible or unreasonably difficult due to the mask requirement (such as actors).
From Friday, Vorarlberg will also follow suit: Here, too, the FFP2 obligation then applies in all indoor public spaces and at work – and in all places where there is customer contact (retail, catering, body-friendly service providers). Masks will also have to be worn at events.