1. Skip to content
  2. Skip to main menu
  3. Skip to more DW sites

Coronavirus: German farm locked down amid infection spike

July 26, 2020

Nearly 500 people are being quarantined at a farm northeast of Munich after dozens of workers tested positive for the coronavirus. Security staff are stationed at the property to make sure no one leaves.

Deutschland Coronavirus Masseninfektion in Niederbayern | Erntehelfer angesteckt
Image: picture-alliance/dpa/A. Weigel

Authorities have locked down a farm in southern Germany after at least 174 harvest workers there were infected with the coronavirus.

All 480 employees and managers at the property in Bavaria's Dingolfing-Landau region have now been quarantined and cannot leave. 

"In order to prevent a wider spread, we unfortunately have to take this step to protect the broader population," said Werner Bumeder of the local government. 

He added that a security service had been hired to make sure the measure stays in place.

Appeal for calm in the community

Local authorities ordered a series of tests be carried out at the farm after seven employees reported contracting the virus. The test results showed that 167 other harvest workers had also been infected.

Read more: Romanian workers reveal dire conditions at slaughterhouses

Bumeder appealed to the local population to remain calm, saying that the infection appeared to be confined to one group of people. 

Workers who have returned negative tests are also barred from leaving the premises and are being housed separately from those who are infected. 

'Second wave already here'

The new cluster in Bavaria comes after similar outbreaks among workers at slaughterhouses in Germany. It also follows warnings from German politicians about a second wave of infections as people return from their summer holidays.

This week, the Robert Koch Institute for infectious diseases reported a significant rise in new cases from around 500 per day to over 800 — a development it called "very worrying."

Read more: German slaughterhouse overhaul: Radical reform or return to status quo?

Michael Kretschmer, premier of the eastern state of Saxony, told the Rheinische Post on Saturday that "the second coronavirus wave is already here." 

"It is already taking place every day. We have new clusters of infection every day which could become very high numbers," he said.

More than 205,000 people have been infected with the coronavirus in Germany, while 9,118 people have died, according to the RKI.

nm/rc (AFP, dpa)