Moscow readies draconian, apocalyptic measures if coronavirus attacks

The Moscow authorities have developed a plan of measures to combat coronavirus. There are three parts in the plan. The first one stipulates preventive measures, the second one targets isolation of infected patients, while the third scenario provides for the implementation of a state of emergency.

The implementation of a state of emergency is unlikely, but the procedure needs to be regulated legally, because federal legislation does not provide for the introduction of emergency situations in case of an outbreak of a dangerous disease.

On March 1, the first case of coronavirus infection in Russia was confirmed in Moscow, when David Berov, a player of an amateur football club, fell ill upon his return from Milan, Italy. As soon as the news was made public, Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin spoke about preventive measures against the spread of coronavirus.

Many of those measures are already part of the above-mentioned plan of actions. According to plan A, all passengers of international flights will have their body temperature measured. If it is higher than usual, the person will be taken to a medical post for a coronavirus test. Passengers arriving from China, Iran and South Korea are registered, tested for coronavirus quarantined.

In case of emergency, Moscow will be closed

Moscow hospitals expand their capacities for patients. Major hospitals have had special isolation wards equipped for coronavirus patients. Children have their temperature measured at schools and kindergartens too. Remote thermometry was organized at several metro stations. Other measures envisaged by plan A include cancellation of all international sports, cultural, scientific and social events in Moscow. For the time being, however, no events have been canceled in Moscow.

Buses, trolleybuses and other means of ground transportation must be disinfected at each end point of the route. In the metro, disinfection is carried out every four hours, stations will be equipped with anti-bacterial units. Regular disinfection awaits railway stations, airports, taxis and car sharing services, public catering, and shopping centers.

By March 12, the authorities of Moscow plan to create a database of contact persons. On the city website, a special section will be created containing information about "dangerous" areas of the spread of coronavirus, places of residence and work of infected individuals.

Plan "B" provides for the closure of

  • Moscow schools,
  • museums,
  • cinemas,
  • libraries,
  • shopping centers,
  • markets,
  • parks,
  • stadiums,
  • sports grounds.

All public events in the city will be either cancelled or banned. If the city quarantine lasts for a long time, the authorities plan to stock up food stores with supplies and introduce a special regime there.

If these measures are not enough, the Moscow authorities will declare a state of emergency. In this case, all enterprises and organizations of the city will be closed, except for those responsible for life support and emergency services. Transport will stop working, it will be impossible to leave or enter the city even on personal transport. A curfew will be introduced, police and the Russian Guard will be patrolling the streets. Those violating the anti-epidemic regime will be arrested.