Around 100 domestic cases of COVID-19 that have arisen in Iceland the past few days can be traced to a pair of French tourists that came to the country in mid-August, Vísir reports. The two were put into isolation after testing positive for the novel coronavirus, but broke regulations. Three different strains of SARS-CoV-2 are responsible for Iceland’s 281 active cases.
In the last five days, 196 people have tested positive for the novel coronavirus in Iceland. Over half of the new infections can be traced to the Irishman pub and Brewdog restaurant, both in downtown Reykjavík. “Most of the infections in recent days originate from these two places. These are probably around 100 people or just over that,” Chief Epidemiologist Þórólfur Guðnason stated.
Þórólfur added that there are three strains of the virus currently circulating. One is the so-called “Akranes” strain, while another is the “French” strain that arrived with the aforementioned tourists in August. The French strain is the strain that infected patrons of the two establishments in Reykjavík, who account for most of the country’s recent cases.
“I have information that it was difficult to get them to follow instructions,” Þórólfur stated of the two French tourists, who were put into isolation after testing positive. “I really cannot say more.”
Those who break isolation can face a fine of ISK 150,000-250,000 ($1,100-1,800/€900-1,500), depending on the severity of the violation. It is not known whether the two tourists were in fact fined.