Ian Brodie with Reuters – New COVID-19 infections are on the rise again in France and people should consider wearing masks on public transport or when in contact with vulnerable people, French government officials said on Tuesday.

“The COVID epidemic seems to be picking up again,” French government spokesman Olivier Veran said, citing a 40% rise in new cases daily cases compared to last week.

The seven-day moving average of new COVID infections in France rose from less than 25,000 per day in early November to more than 44,000 on Monday.

Still, it is well below levels of over 100,000 seen over March-April and in July, and highs of over 366,000 in January.

Responding to lawmaker questions in parliament on Tuesday, French Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne said she recommended that people wear masks in public transport and when they come into contact with vulnerable people. For the moment there is no compulsion, but regional authorities faced with overcrowded hospitals may soon consider making mask-wearing obligatory again.