Organisers of the Geneva Motor Show have issued wide-ranging advice for exhibitors and visitors attending next week’s event in the Swiss city in the light of the current coronavirus epidemic, which has hit Italy particularly hard.

Geneva lies 155 miles north west of Milan, the largest city in the Lombardy region to which the British Foreign & Commonwealth Office is advising against all but essential travel to ten small towns after Italy recorded 10 deaths from coronavirus.

Press days are scheduled for 3 and 4 March next week, with show organisers encouraging exhibitors from at-risk areas to ensure staff pass necessary checks and do not show any symptoms of infection in the 14 days prior to their arrival in Switzerland, to avoid any potential spread.

Palexpo is in regular contact with the General Directorate of Health of the Republic and Canton of Geneva and its medical advisor to develop an action plan, adjustable in real time,” said a Palexpo statement.

“This plan recommends the implementation of a programme of cleaning, disinfection and prevention along with the use of correct cleaning/ sanitising materials and products. In this process, Palexpo is following the recommendations of the competent public health authorities in the field, namely the Federal Office of Public Health (FOPH).

“We strongly recommend you keep yourself up to date with the information from these authorities, so you can react in the best manner possible to potential questions from your employees and partners.”

Measures being implemented:

  • Increased cleaning and disinfection programme across all high-volume touchpoints, for example, catering areas, surfaces, handrails, toilets, entrances/exits, public touch-screens, along with the use of correct cleaning/sanitising materials and products
  • Awareness campaign via online and on-site info-share and signage
  • Awareness and training to all staff on standard personal preventative measures, for example, personal hygiene, frequency of use of sanitising/disinfection products
  • Installing new signage on-site, reminding attendees of hygiene recommendations

“Medical staff and – depending on the number of visitors – a doctor are present,” added Palexpo. “Trained to diagnose infectious diseases, they will be able if necessary to organise the referral of affected patients to hospitals.

“In the event of questions or sudden symptoms, please contact our on-site medical service – follow the Infirmerie signs.”