Organisers have unveiled a series of COVID-19 countermeasures for the Tokyo 2020 Torch Relay ©Getty Images

Tokyo 2020 Torchbearers will be asked to wear protective masks when the Olympic Flame resumes its journey to the host city in a month from now. 

A safety dossier released today in Tokyo was drawn up in consultation with the 47 Japanese prefectures on the route.

New Tokyo 2020 President Seiko Hashimoto said: "We have produced guidelines for COVID-19 countermeasures including health monitoring of Torchbearers and staff members so that we can organise the Olympic Torch Relay in a safe and secure manner. 

"We met each prefecture and municipality and presented our ideas. 

"The infection status may vary for each prefecture and conditions may change so we need a fine tuned approach."

More information about the route is expected on March 2.

Some 500 staff will be required to keep a health check record for 15 days before beginning work on the Torch Relay. 

Bearers originally assigned in 2020 will keep their slots "in principle", but precise details will only be made known "about two weeks in advance of their respective start day".

All will be subject to temperature checks and those registering 37.5 degrees Celsius and above will be advised not to participate. 

Guidelines have identified the "three C's" as danger areas - closed spaces, crowded places and close-contact settings.

They include procedures to be followed by bearers and staff who feel unwell.

"If individual operations staff or other participants are exposed to COVID-19, the Olympic Torch Relay should in principle still go ahead if it is determined that infection has not spread to others," Tokyo 2020 said.

Tokyo 2020 President Seiko Hashimoto said the guidelines would ensure the Torch Relay is organised in a safe and secure manner ©Getty Images
Tokyo 2020 President Seiko Hashimoto said the guidelines would ensure the Torch Relay is organised in a safe and secure manner ©Getty Images

Organisers have conceded that the event could still be suspended "if there is any concern that a cluster infection may occur or have occurred, consideration should be given as to whether to postpone the Olympic Torch Relay to the following day or later", though they insist this is unlikely. 

Tokyo 2020 indicated that, if necessary, it would still be possible to hold the Torch Relay without spectators. 

Chosen Torchbearers will be ordered not to disclose their participation on social media to minimise the gathering of large crowds, and mainstream media will also be banned from revealing information until 30 minutes beforehand. 

The guidelines state: "As a general rule, Torchbearers should wear masks, although they may run unmasked if they maintain a certain distance between each other."

Guidance also advises participants to "refrain from having loud conversations".

Roadside spectators have been told not to travel outside their locality and "will be encouraged to applaud rather than cheer". 

Tokyo 2020 have also issued revised advice for the "kiss", the sequence when the flame is exchanged. 

Torchbearers should position themselves side-by-side rather than face-to-face to avoid close contact with each other, while Consideration should be given to ensure Torchbearers do not come into contact with each other. 

Organisers also revealed "special measures" for the participation of big name runners.

"The appropriateness of including celebrity torchbearers who are likely to attract crowds of spectators along the roadside should be carefully reviewed," Tokyo 2020 said.

"Rigorous measures will be employed to avoid overcrowding", Tokyo 2020 said, including closing the route to spectators or in some cases "cancellation of the participation of celebrities".

Organisers also plan to restrictions at daily celebration events. 

"The admission of Ceremony visitors should be controlled, in principle by requiring them to book in advance so that numbers can be monitored," they said.

"Cast members and performers should in principle wear masks. However, if the format of their show necessitates it, they may perform without masks as long as they keep a certain distance from each other."

Tokyo 2020 have warned that relay arrangements could change "as further experience is gained and in line with the infection status in each region.