Italian authorities have urged residents not to panic-buy as cases of coronaviruses in the north of the country increased to at least 229. In the city of Milan, local supermarket shelves usually filled with canned goods and pasta are reportedly empty. Protective masks have also run out in pharmacies.
“Rather than dashing to the supermarkets to grab food, perhaps we should spend time looking after the most vulnerable, such as old people, who are particularly at risk,” said Milan’s Mayor Beppe Sala.
After a spike in coronavirus cases, much of northern Italy is under quarantine, affecting at least 50,000 people. A cluster of ten communities in northern Italy has been labeled as the “red zone”, being under de facto quarantine.
Large gatherings and annual events, such as the carnival in Venice, have been called off in efforts to stop the spreading of the deadly virus. Major landmarks in Italy, such as the La Scala opera house and Saint Mark’s Basilica, are closed until further notice. Public transportation, including boats in Venice, are being disinfected to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
Seventh death confirmed
Seven people have died from the coronavirus so far in the Lombardy region, which is at the epicenter of the outbreak in Italy. Most of the fatalities are older people with underlying conditions.
Italy reported 215 cases of the virus on February 24, which is the second-highest number of cases reported outside of Asia. Italian health officials are still on the lookout for the first transmitter, known as Patient Zero, of the coronavirus in Italy.
Soccer games called off
The quarantine in the city of Milan, which is home to popular football club Inter Milan, also saw top soccer games being postponed due to coronavirus fears. Inter Milan’s match against U.C. Sampdoria has been postponed.
The soccer governing body in Europe, Union of European Football Associations (UEFA), said that it is “in touch with Inter and with local authorities on the matter and there is no further comment to be made at this stage.”
Fashion show held without audience
Famous Italian fashion house, Armani, held its Fall Winter 2020-21 Fashion Show on February 23 in an empty theater.
“The Women’s FW20-21 fashion show will be held behind closed doors. This is a preventative measure decided by Mr. Armani to support national efforts in safeguarding public health,” the famous Italian designer tweeted.