No shouting, no talking loudly: how Japan may ask Olympics spectators to help tackle coronavirus

Reuters
·1-min read
Olympics test event
Olympics test event

Spectators at next year's Tokyo Olympics may be asked "to refrain from shouting or talking loudly" to help prevent spreading coronavirus. 

The no-scream guideline has been in place for months at Japan's professional football and baseball stadiums.

Olympic organisers say a decision on whether foreign spectators will be allowed to attend will be made next year, depending on pandemic developments. Japan has held several recent test events, including a four-nation gymnastics meet last weekend that was attended by spectators from Japan.

"By next spring, we will be coming up with a plan for spectators, including non-Japanese spectators," said Tokyo 2020 chief executive officer Toshiro Muto. "It is impossible to set a 14-day quarantine period for foreign spectators, so tests before and upon arrival are needed."

He added: "There is a possibility that spectators may be asked to refrain from shouting or talking loudly."

Muto said he expected details of coronavirus counter-measures to be ironed out during a three-day visit to Japan by International Olympic Committee head Thomas Bach next week.

Athletes arriving in Tokyo for the Games, postponed from 2020 because of the coronavirus pandemic, will be exempt from the 14-day isolation period Japan has imposed on anyone arriving from overseas.

Olympic organisers say details still need to be worked out, but measures for athletes are likely to include coronavirus testing within 72 hours before arriving in Japan.