The Armengol government is taking stronger measures in the run-up to Christmas to try and stem a third wave and raise the alert level in Mallorca to 4.
On Christmas Eve the curfew is moved up to 22:00 and family gatherings are limited to six people instead of ten. This is one of the most resounding measures announced by the Balearic Government to stop the spread of the virus on the island. These new measures will be maintained at least until 28 December. For New Year’s Eve, the Government is taking it for granted that these restrictions will also remain in place.
The President of the Government explained at a press conference: “We have controlled the advance of the virus twice, but now it is demanding enormous efforts from us once again”, especially because of the effect of the disease on Mallorca. “We cannot afford to relax”, she added.
With a cumulative incidence of 336 cases per 100,000 inhabitants on the island, Armengol said that “these are not times to celebrate, but to protect ourselves”. The President also recalled that the rate of positivity in Mallorca is 7%, well above the maximum set by the European Union, which is 3%.
Restaurants and shops
The catering sector will also be hard hit by the restrictions, as access to the interior of the premises is prohibited and consumption will only be possible on the terraces. The restaurant must close at 10pm, except on Fridays, Saturdays and the eve of public holidays, when the shutters must be lowered at 6pm to avoid the ‘afternoon’.
However, home sales will be allowed until midnight in order to allow economic activity in the hotel and catering industry during these dates.
The new measures also oblige shopping centres to limit their capacity to 30% in order to avoid crowding. No more than one person per 10 square metres will be allowed. In addition, they will have to inform customers of the number of people inside the establishments at any given time.
Cultural and sports activities
As far as theatres and cultural shows are concerned, the limitation will also be 50% of their capacity. Sports competitions, except those of a national nature, may not be held with an audience. In the gymnasiums, only 30% of their capacity will be allowed and a maximum of 6 people will be allowed in the directed activities.
At level 4, as at the other levels, smoking is forbidden on public roads or in open spaces for public use when it cannot be ensured that a minimum distance of two metres is maintained with other people, as well as when moving. Smoking is also prohibited on the terraces of establishments for public use or similar spaces.
The Government will be reviewing this situation again in two weeks’ time, so these levels of protection will be maintained until 28 December, although it is expected that they will most likely remain in place on New Year’s Eve and the following days. Everything will depend on the levels of contamination of the covid-19. “We know that it will be an atypical Christmas, within this complicated year that we are having, but my responsibility is to look after the general interest and put health above everything else”, said President Armengol, who appeared accompanied by the President of the Council, Catalina Cladera. Armengol added one of her usual phrases: “Without health there is no economy”.