COVID-19: France records new all-time high of nearly 19,000 cases in 24 hours
Eiffel Tower Paris (AFP:File : Philippe Lopez)

French health authorities reported 18,746 new confirmed COVID-19 cases over 24 hours on Wednesday, a new all-time daily high, and almost double Tuesday's tally of 10,489.

The number of people in France who have died from Covid-19 infections was up by 80, at 32,445, and the cumulative number of cases now totals 653,509.

French President Emmanuel Macron responded to the record cases saying there would be new restrictions put in place to curb the virus's spread.

On Tuesday, the proportion of intensive care unit beds in the Paris region occupied by Covid-19 patients reached 40 percent.

French authorities put Paris and three neighbouring areas on the top Covid-19 alert level on Tuesday – with the city’s iconic bars and cafés shut down for two weeks to try to stem the virus, although restaurants have been allowed to remain open.

Minister of Labour Élisabeth Borne had on Tuesday urged those who can do so to work from home “as much as possible”.

(FRANCE 24 with REUTERS, AFP and AP)