A health expert says outdoor dining is still risky while Ireland’s case numbers remain high.
It comes as the restaurant industry pushes to reopen following new data showing a tiny risk of Covid transmission in the open air.
The Irish Times reported yesterday that just 0.1% of Ireland’s Covid cases since the start of the pandemic have been linked to outdoor transmission.
I'm not sure about this.
Strong tracing only started *very* recently. https://t.co/LVSDieaJpe
— Tom Douglas (@TomDouglas95) April 6, 2021
Restaurant Groups Want Outdoor Dining Immediately
In response, restaurants say this shows outdoor dining should be allowed to resume immediately.
But DCU Professor Anthony Staines says the contact tracing system hasn’t gone back far enough.
He says Ireland hasn't gone deep enough to properly find the source of outbreaks.
Professor Staines adds that there are still question marks, as most of our data comes from other countries.
"Most people in Ireland have been giving public health advice from other countries."
"That's because ours wasn't good enough."
We Need NPHET To Clarify - RAI
Restaurants Association CEO Adrian Cummins says officials must establish if the data is correct.
"I think NPHET are going to have to come out and make a statement on it."
"Is this data correct?"
He adds that "we are in a totally different space" if it's not.
While NPHET has consistently warned there are still risks.
However it's also said outdoor activities are much safer than indoor ones.