Another day, another Covid-19 outbreak traced back to a bar. In what seems to be a daily occurrence now as more countries and cities re-open their social drinking establishments, bars are increasingly solidifying their reputation as prime coronavirus transmission hot spots.
Bar outbreaks have since happened in France, where one 19 year old with Covid-19 managed to infect 72 of his friends by partying at a bar in the small town of Quiberon. Just in the last few days, 16 people were diagnosed with Covid-19 after hundreds rushed into the pub in Stone in England. Hundreds more who were at the pub had to be tested with many results still pending and the outbreak triggered a rush of closures of other business in the small town. Numerous other countries have reported bar outbreaks, including the United states, Spain and South korea.
In many places, mask mandates are in place to require face coverings in inside public environments such as grocery stores, public transport and other retail environments. The aim is to reduce droplets exhaled by a person being passed on to someone else. Yet bars and restaurants have been excluded from this for rather obvious reasons – you can’t eat or drink through a mask and if you can, your mask is probably not doing very much to prevent transmission of the coronavirus to others. So we mandate masks in places where people typically spend less time in than they do in bars, but they open the bars anyway and just hope for the best.