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Chen says currently no plan to upgrade to Level 3 alert

CECC mulling Level 3 restrictions if Delta outbreak worsens in New Taipei

CECC head Chen Shih-chung. (CECC photo)

CECC head Chen Shih-chung. (CECC photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The head of Taiwan's Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) on Tuesday (Sept. 7) said there is currently no plan to raise the alert level but further Level 3 restrictions could be possible if an outbreak at schools in New Taipei is not brought under control.

On Monday (Sept. 6), the CECC confirmed that a cluster infection among EVA Air pilots was caused by the Delta variant of COVID-19, while the center on Tuesday stated that it is "highly likely" that an outbreak in a New Taipei kindergarten was precipitated by the Delta strain. When asked by media if epidemic prevention measures would be tightened, Health Minister and CECC head Chen Shih-chung (陳時中) said that there is currently no plan to upgrade to a Level 3 alert, but he said it is possible if the outbreak in New Taipei is not brought under control.

As of Tuesday, 315 people have been placed in isolation and are undergoing testing after coming in contact with two EVA Air cargo plane pilots, case Nos. 16,119 and 16,120, who have both been found to have been infected with the Delta variant.

In addition, a cluster infection broke out in a kindergarten in New Taipei City over the weekend. The cluster appears to have started with a husband (case No. 16,128) and wife (case No. 16,129) in New Taipei City's Tucheng District.

The wife, who is a kindergarten teacher, appears to have spread the virus to her students. The cluster has now risen to 16 cases and 411 contacts, with 362 in isolation and 49 undergoing self-health management.

Chen said that New Taipei City is emulating the way Taoyuan City tightened its Level 2 restrictions to deal with the EVA Air pilot cluster. Measures include suspending classes at six schools, carrying out epidemiological investigations, and testing contacts.

Updated : 2021-09-20 20:02 GMT+08:00