Organizers unveil new COVID-19 measures for Tokyo Olympics

The latest version of the playbook aims at reducing the chance of an outbreak at the Tokyo Olympics.
The latest version of the playbook aims at reducing the chance of an outbreak at the Tokyo Olympics.
Srijanee Majumdar

Athletes will not be able to visit any tourist areas, shops, restaurants, bars, or gyms, under a set of strict new rules for the Tokyo Olympics announced on Wednesday.

As the COVID-19 pandemic persists, organizers unveiled the latest edition of the 'playbook' that provides a framework of principles and outlines measures to ensure a safe Tokyo Olympics.

"All participants will need to take two coronavirus tests prior to arriving in Japan," the organizers, including the Tokyo Olympic committee and the International Olympic Committee (IOC), said in a joint statement.

With just under three months remaining for the Games, organizers are keen to shift the narrative from one of great uncertainty and fear to one of hope.

The fresh guidelines offer a comprehensive glance at the preventive measures, but questions still hang over Tokyo's readiness to host the Games.

Also Read: Fans unlikely to attend Tokyo Olympics Torch Relay opening ceremony - Reports

Tokyo Olympics Playbook: Latest set of rules for athletes

The following are the rules that have been announced:

  • People traveling to the country for the Tokyo Olympics should test twice before boarding a flight to Japan.
  • They are required to carry a smartphone and download two applications to monitor their health assessment.
  • Athletes and others in a close proximity will be tested daily for three days after arrival.
  • After three days of daily testing, they will be required to test for COVID-19 depending on the operational nature of their role and level of contact with athletes.
  • Olympic athletes must keep their interaction with non-Olympic athletes to a minimum.
  • Athletes cannot visit any tourist areas, shops, bars, restaurants, or gyms.
  • All participating athletes must wear face masks at all times, except when eating, sleeping, training, or competing.
  • All participating athletes will receive a Samsung smartphone upon arrival at the venue.
  • All participating athletes are prohibited from using public transport and must use vehicles specially designed for Olympic athletes.
  • All participating athletes are required to eat only in the limited areas as outlined in the Playbook, including the venues, their accommodation's eateries, and their rooms, with the help of room service and food delivery options.

The playbook will be updated in view of the COVID-19 situation, ahead of the Tokyo Olympics that begins on July 23. A third version of the playbook is expected to be released in June, according to reports.

Meanwhile, Japan imposed a third emergency in Tokyo, Osaka, and several other areas last week to prevent a coronavirus resurgence. The Olympic torch relay was run in a city park in Osaka with no spectators as a precautionary measure.

Edited by Sudeshna Banerjee
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