Tokyo Adds Record 243 Coronavirus Cases

Tokyo adds record 243 coronavirus cases

Officials in Tokyo are dealing with a jump in coronavirus infections. The number of new cases has now topped 200 for two days in a row. It's the first time that's happened since the start of the pandemic.

On Friday, officials reported a record high of 243 new cases. The capital recorded 224 for the previous day.

But the government says that so far, there's no need for another state of emergency.

Tokyo's Governor says she realizes that many residents are concerned. But Koike Yuriko says an increase in testing to 3,000 a day is behind the surge.

She said, "Operators of nightlife entertainment establishments which found their employees infected are cooperating. Some are holding group tests. But we are urging people to exercise greater caution due to the situation."

Koike is calling on residents and business owners to carry out preventative measures.

Over 20,000 people have contracted the virus across Japan. The death toll stands at more than 980.

Despite the surge, government officials are going ahead with plans to ease restrictions on attendance at major events.

Starting Friday, authorities are raising the maximum attendance allowed from 1,000 to 5,000.

Organizers of Japan's professional baseball and soccer leagues are allowing up to 5,000 spectators into stadiums for Friday's games.

Organizers are calling on spectators to observe social distancing. Other measures include wearing masks, and temperature checks at the entrance to stadiums.