People were seen wearing masks while shopping or walking in Vienna on Wednesday as the government introduced new measures making face masks obligatory in public to fight the coronavirus spread.

"It is unusual, but the action is required. With time you get used to everything. It's like that," said deliveryman Robert Lager.

Another shopper added the situation was not good but that there is "no alternative, as long as there's no vaccine."

"Every customer who enters the shop is receives a facemask and disposable gloves. Without wearing that, customers are not allowed to come in," said supermarket owner Israelov Moshe.

Not everyone was happy about the measure as face masks covering people faces hide emotional range according to pensioner Friedrich Weirich.

Another pensioner decided not to comply with the new regulation, adding she was "hoping of not getting it" does not want "to get nervous about it. It is how it is, and we have to deal with it."

On Monday Austria became the first country to require supermarket customers to wear face masks while shopping, with the items, which will not be medical grade, set to be handed out to shoppers in front of stores.

According to the latest data provided by the Johns Hopkins University, Austria reported over 10,300 coronavirus cases and 146 deaths.

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Associated Press 11 May 2020 11:44 CEST

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