Saturday 31 July 2021

No ‘Amsterdam effect’ after King’s Day in other cities

Photo: Depositphotos.com

Some cities across the Netherlands saw small clusters of coronavirus infections after King’s Day, but no major peaks.

Earlier this week, the Amsterdam public health service GGD said that at least 483 people picked up coronavirus during the crowds and festivities in the capital on April 27.

Although people had been asked to celebrate at home, Amsterdam saw crowds not unlike a normal King’s Day, leading to some 50 arrests and the arrival of riot police to restore the order in some areas. Caretaker prime minister Mark Rutte later said that concerns about the effects were justified, as at least 17 clusters of infection could be traced back to the day.

But according to research by Dutch news service Nu.nl, the effect in eight other cities was far less pronounced. In Rotterdam, the local GGD told the news service, some extra infections amongst young people were traced to the festivities there.

There were several very small groups of infection reported in Eindhoven, Nijmegen and Den Haag, particularly amongst younger people.

Meanwhile in Utrecht, the city became so crowded that authorities appealed for people to stop coming to the centre, but there was no ‘marked increase’ in infections according to the local GGD.

Groningen authorities have said that festivities in general have had an effect on the spread of the disease but told Nu.nl that there was no specific effect related to King’s Day.

However, the authorities said it was difficult to pinpoint the effects of one day, especially since coronavirus rules were relaxed that week, and not everybody who gets a coronavirus infection takes a public test.

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