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Yodellers blamed for Switzerland’s worst COVID super-spreading event

“There’s an extremely high rate of positive tests,” said hospital Franziska Foellmi, a director at Schwyz hospital.

Dr Reto Nueesch, head of internal medicine at the hospital, posted a video online telling locals: “It’s time for you, the population, to react. Wear masks. Don’t party any more.”

A Swiss flag in the Swiss Alps.

A Swiss flag in the Swiss Alps.Credit:AP

While local authorities there have stopped short of imposing a yodelling ban, they have increased infection control measures, making mask-wearing compulsory at all public and private events with more than 50 people.

However, unlike other cantons with high COVID levels, it has still baulked at making masks compulsory in shops. News of the yodel supercluster came as Alain Berset, the Swiss health minister, warned the situation nationwide was “deteriorating” at an alarming rate.

The wealthy Alpine nation of 8.5 million people registered 2600 new cases on Thursday, the worst since the start of the pandemic. The proportion of positive tests has jumped from 5.4 to 10.2 per cent in the past week.

Simonetta Sommaruga, president of the Swiss Confederation, warned a full-blown second wave was looming. “It is five minutes to midnight,” she said, urging everyone in the country to take precautions.

The country had lifted most measures it imposed during the spring wave of infections.

In Geneva, authorities this week limited spontaneous private gatherings to 15 people, while demonstrations were limited to 100. It has also imposed a mandatory 10-day quarantine on anyone arriving from a long line of countries.

Telegraph, London

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