CORONAVIRUS – This year, “celebrating” New Year’s Eve, at home, with your loved ones or at a restaurant, will be possible, but in moderation. Yes Emmanuel Macron -which will speak at 8 p.m. for the traditional ones presidential greetings to the French- and his government, have ruled out the idea of a curfew as in 2020, the unprecedented rise in contamination linked to Omicron variant pushed several prefects to take measures to try to limit it. All without depriving the French of all outings.
In connection with the ban on large outdoor gatherings, the vast majority of fireworks, concerts or dance evenings organized by the municipalities have been canceled. The mask is again made compulsory in the streets of several cities (including Paris) or ski resorts and many bars and restaurants will have to close their doors at 2 a.m.
To allow you to see more clearly, The HuffPost takes stock of the health measures in force on the night of December 31, 2021 to January 1, 2022.
“Limit large parties and large dinners”
At the time of his press conference on Monday, December 27, Jean Castex once again hammered home the recommendations made by the health authorities: “Let us limit the big parties and the big dinners. Let’s wear the mask. Let’s ventilate the rooms. Let’s respect barrier gestures. Let’s test ourselves ”, he asked the French, calling them once again to responsibility for this new festive evening after Christmas.
You will therefore be able to move around freely all night long, with no time or kilometer restrictions. No gauge has been imposed or recommended for private parties, even if the government and epidemiologists call on the French to avoid “big parties” at your home.
On the other hand, large spontaneous gatherings in the street are prohibited and to avoid or sanction them, nearly 95,000 police and gendarmes will be mobilized this evening in France, the Interior Ministry said on Friday. Nearly 3,200 soldiers of the Sentinel force are added to the device throughout the territory.
In Paris, Hérault and Gironde, fireworks are canceled and alcohol consumption on public roads is prohibited. Other departments, such as Alpes-Maritime or Ille-et-Villaine, have added measures against outdoor music or the rave-party. Some prefects, like that of the North, for their part, rely “on the common sense of the population”. In Bas-Rhin, a decree also prohibits the sale and use of firecrackers and fireworks, which are very popular in Alsace and neighboring Germany.
The mandatory mask outdoors in many cities
Wearing a mask becomes mandatory again this Friday in the streets of Paris and several departments of Île-de-France for over 11s. A measure already taken, gradually since the end of November, by 34 metropolitan departments, according to the LCI census. This within the limits of agglomerations. These are Finistère, Côte d’Armor, Morbihan, Ille-et-Vilaine, Loire-Atlantique, Maine-et-Loire, Deux-Sèvres, Orne, ‘Eure, Eure-et-Loir, Val-d’Oise, Yvelines, Loir-et-Cher, Cher, Nord, Aisne, Ardennes, Meuse, Meurthe -et-Moselle, Bas-Rhin, Haut-Rhin, Territoire de Belfort, Loire, Rhône, Isère, Haute-Savoie, Landes, Tarn, Hérault, Bouches-du-Rhône, Var, Alpes-Maritimes, Pyrénées-Orientales and Ariège.
The mask is also compulsory in some town centers, such as Toulouse as well as in most ski resorts in Savoie, Haute-Savoie, Isère and Hautes-Alpes.
As a reminder, cyclists, users of two-wheelers or people “practicing a sporting activity” on public roads are not concerned. The Paris prefecture specified that “regular and reinforced controls” will be put in place and offenders may be fined 135 euros.
Nightclubs closed, early closing for all bars and restaurants
For the second year in a row, the 1600 nightclubs in France will be closed; they will be elsewhere at least until February. Bars and restaurants will be able to remain open, if they wish to work for this New Year’s Eve. However, they will have to lower their curtains and ask their customers to leave the establishment at 2 a.m. in about fifteen departments, including Paris, Calvados, the Alpes-Maritimes, or even Charente-Maritime. The Var has even advanced this time end at 1 a.m.
It will also be officially forbidden to dance. It remains to be seen whether the instructions will be respected in all establishments. The ban on drinking standing in bars and cafes does not come into force until Monday, January 3.
Spending the evening between “covids”, the false good idea?
It is an idea to say the least surprising but which is spread between groups of friends, given the size of the population identified as positive at the end of the year, most often with little or without any symptoms of the disease: spend New Year’s Eve among “covids”.
For the General Directorate of Health (DGS), contacted by Release, one of the risks of this New Year lies in the breaking of the rules of isolation. “Going to positive friends for dinner is like taking public transport, taxis, etc.”, lists the DGS. So many opportunities to spread the virus. Instead, the authority suggests spending the evening with infected people … who are already part of your household, rather than moving around.
Specialists are more divided but some have decided to alert the French who have this idea in mind: For Yannick Simonin, lecturer in virology at the University of Montpellier, interviewed by West France, “That’s a very bad idea”. “Usually when we are infected, whether we are symptomatic or not, our immune system generates an immune response that limits the risk of infection with the same virus,” he explains to the newspaper. However, he believes that “the risk of reinfection” especially in people “with weakened immune systems” cannot be ruled out. They “could develop a more severe form of the disease”.
See also on The HuffPost: Veran illustrates with figures the “tidal wave” of the Omicron variant in France