Tokyo Olympics unveil 'playbook' for keeping Games safe amid COVID-19

By Jean Lotus
Tokyo Olympics unveil 'playbook' for keeping Games safe amid COVID-19
Health personnel screen spectators and gaming officials for the coronavirus disease during an Olympic-related event in Tokyo, Japan, on October 21, 2020. File Photo by Keizo Mori/UPI | License Photo

Feb. 3 (UPI) -- Organizers of the Tokyo Summer Olympics on Wednesday issued a "playbook" that outlines the COVID-19 health measures they're planning to safely put on the Games in July.

The guide will be given to international federations and technical officials. A separate handbook for athletes and media will be unveiled soon, the officials said.


The playbook covers measures for transportation, testing, masking, distancing and audience participation. It includes mandatory testing for all participation 14 days before they leave for Japan and a two-week quarantine after arrival.

Wednesday's playbook says officials should avoid public transportation while in Japan and air out their hotel rooms every 30 minutes.

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"The playbooks are the basis of our game plan to ensure all Olympic and Paralympic Games participants and the people of Japan stay safe and healthy this summer," said a joint statement from the Tokyo 2020 Organizing Committee, International Olympic Committee and International Paralympic Committee.

"They will provide direction and set parameters that will enable people and organizations to advance their planning."

Participants at the Tokyo Games will not be allowed to visit tourist areas, shops, restaurants, bars or gyms and will be asked to download a mobile app to help with contact tracing.

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"The health and safety of everyone at the Olympic and Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020 are our top priority," said IOC Olympic Games Executive Director Christophe Dubi.

"We each have our part to play. That's why these playbooks have been created."

The Games are scheduled to begin July 23 and run through Aug. 8.

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Still officially branded the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympics, the Games were postponed by the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic almost a year ago. Last month, Olympic officials denied a report that said they ultimately expect to cancel the quadrennial event.

Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga has faced criticism for his handling of the Games and the pandemic, but he has acted to rally his country to support the Summer Olympics, which have been staged only once in Japan, in 1964.

Suga predicted that the Games will ultimately stand as proof that "humanity defeated the coronavirus."

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On Tuesday, Japan states of emergency for 10 prefectures nationwide related to rising cases and crowded hospitals.

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