Panic buying continues in Tokyo as residents asked to stay home for weekend
Japan Today -- Mar 28
Large queues formed at supermarkets and stores in Tokyo on Friday as residents in the Japanese capital prepared for a weekend at home, after the city's governor called on them to remain indoors to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

Tokyo has seen a surge in coronavirus cases this week, reporting a record 47 cases on Thursday for a total of 259.

While not many for a city of nearly 14 million, experts have warned of a high risk of an "overshoot" - or explosive rise - given that more than half of the newest cases could not be traced.

The Tokyo area has also asked residents to refrain from congregating to view its famous spring cherry blossoms at parks and plans to close its zoos and aquariums for two weeks.

Parts of three public parks in Tokyo will be closed off until the flower-viewing season is over, a Tokyo government official told Reuters, without specifying the dates.

And retail giants Takashimaya and Matsuya said they would shutter multiple department stores in the greater metropolitan area on the upcoming weekend.

Tokyo has not declared an emergency or a full-blown lockdown, and its streets were not as deserted as many European cities, where laws are forcing residents to stay indoors.

But during rush hour around 8 a.m., some subway lines in central Tokyo where commuters normally stand elbow-to-elbow were visibly less crowded, some even with empty seats.

News source: Japan Today
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