Turku City recommends use of face masks on public transport

07 Aug 2020, 18:42

  DF News Desk

People are seen in a city road in Turku. DF Photo by Gishnizjani Golnar.

The City of Turku has recommended the use of face masks on public transport as the COVID-19 situation is deteriorating in the country, reported Xinhua.

When the new school year starts in Turku next Wednesday, the recommendation will apply to all age groups, the city said in a press release issued on Friday.

Turku has thus become the first city in Finland that officially issued a mask recommendation.

If possible, travel should be scheduled outside of peak hours, reminded the city, saying that it recommends people to continue avoiding using cash for buying tickets.

According to the city, citizens have to acquire face masks by themselves. However, the city procures and pays face masks for those employees whose job description is accompanied by a national mask recommendation. It means healthcare and nursing professionals will be provided with face masks.

"Each of us can have a big impact on how the epidemic is spreading now or whether it can be kept under control together," said Minna Arve, mayor of Turku, in the press release.

The Ministry of Social Affairs and Health (STM) and the National Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) said Thursday at a press conference that the basic reproduction number (RO) depicting the spreading of COVID-19 had risen to between 1.10 and 1.40 domestically. During the previous weeks, it had still been 0.85.

The ministry also announced that a "road map" for upcoming anti-COVID-19 measures would be published next week. It would also include the criteria for requiring the use of face masks nationwide.