Photo/Illutration People wearing masks to help curb the spread of the novel coronavirus walk in Tokyo's Shibuya district on Dec. 1. (AP Photo)

Tokyo logged 500 fresh cases of the novel coronavirus on Dec. 2, its highest for a Wednesday yet, and Hokkaido reported five deaths from COVID-19.

Osaka Prefecture, which boasts the nation's second largest city, reported 427 new cases, its third highest on record.

Aichi Prefecture confirmed 219 new cases, of which 113 were in Nagoya.

In Aichi Prefecture, serious cases as of Dec. 1 numbered 30, up by two from the day before and setting a record for two consecutive days.

The previous record for a Wednesday in Tokyo was marked Nov. 18 with 485 cases, according to the metropolitan health officials.

The number of serious cases on Dec. 2 dropped by three from the previous day to 59.

Hokkaido confirmed 176 new cases on Dec. 2.

Authorities in the capital, Sapporo, recorded 66 new cases, the lowest daily figure since officials declared Nov. 7 that a concentrated effort was needed to contain the virus.

But in the city of Asahikawa, where an infection cluster has occurred at multiple hospitals, a record 46 new cases were registered Dec. 2.

In Okushiri town on remote Okushiri Island, which has no hospital to treat infectious diseases, 20 new cases of novel coronavirus infection were confirmed on Dec. 2. They have been transferred to Esashi, a town on the mainland, officials said. 

Among the new cases in Tokyo, people in their 20s led other age groups, with 125 patients. They were followed by 81 patients in their 30s, 75 in their 40s and 62 in their 50s. The number of patients 65 or older came to 88.