THE PUBLIC SAFETY MEASURES benefit from further alleviation tomorrow, as residents on the Orihuela Costa will be allowed to venture out of their homes for the first time since the extraordinary confinement regulations were introduced. But if you´re thinking about going out this weekend, there are some new rules you´ll need to be aware of.

As a nation, Spain is beginning to reap the benefits of one of the world´s most stringent national quarantines. Rates of overall SARS-CoV-2 infection are falling, tens of thousands of people are recovering from the disease, and recorded deaths are consistently low with just 268 deaths yesterday – the lowest daily figure since 20th March.

The Government introduced new rules last Sunday that allowed children 6.3 million Spanish children under the age of 14-years to leave the family home after 42 days of confinement, and on Tuesday President Pedro Sánchez announced a phased strategy to eradicate all extraordinary public safety measures introduced to combat the coronavirus pandemic by the end of June.

Dubbed “the Transition Towards a New Normal”, the Spanish nation will enter the initial phase this weekend, and from tomorrow (Saturday 2nd May) all adults will be able to go outside for a walk or to take part in individual exercise.

But with Germany experiencing an upward-turn in newly diagnosed coronavirus cases and the United Kingdom recording more total deaths due to COVID-19 than Spain, authorities in the country are vehemently determined to ensure that relaxation of quarantine rules doesn´t lead to an unnecessary increase in infection.

With this in mind, the Minister for Health, Salvador Illa has introduced a fixed timetable to avoid overcrowding and the associated risk of coronavirus transmission.

The timetable allocates parts of the day to different groups of people to ensure that societies most vulnerable groups are protected. The new rules replace the newly introduced guidelines for parents with children.

Coronavirus, going out Orihuela Costa

Going out, solo sports outside of the home

From tomorrow morning, individual adults aged 14-years to 69-years wishing to exercise in public outside of their homes may do so between 6:00 and 10:00 in the morning or in the evening from 20:00 to 23:00.

Sports activity includes running, cycling, or jogging, limited to the boundaries of your municipal area, and people going out must take part in their sport alone and maintain social distancing of two metres away from others.

People going out for a walk can do so with one other person from their residential household and must stay within 1 km of the family home. It is currently not permitted to take a pet with you, so you can´t use this time to walk your dog.

There are no time limits for walking or individual sports beyond the times specified on the timetable but always limited to one outside activity per day per person (walking or sports, but not both on the same day).

Families with children can now only go out between the hours of 12:00 until 19:00 once a day (instead of 09:00 until 21:00 as previously announced). The other rules continue to apply: only one parent is allowed to go out with up to three children, a maximum of one kilometre away from the family home, and just once a day.

Coronavirus, going out Orihuela Costa

New activity rules in force until Monday 11th May

According to Salvador Illa, it will be vital to keep the over 70´s and the vulnerable separate from younger people to minimise the risk of contagion, so those over the age of 70 will be allowed to go out either from 10:00 until noon or from 19:00 to 20:00 – accompanied by one person from their family home.

The new rules will remain in force until the beginning of Phase One of the de-escalation plan, currently scheduled for Monday 11th May. In all cases, daily outside activity must occur just once and must take place within your municipality of residence. Wearing a mask is also recommended and please remember that beach areas remain strictly off-limits.

These new rights are additional to your existing rights, so you don´t need to use you right to walk or take part in sports to do other things you need to do, like essential shopping, or visiting the pharmacy to collect or purchase medication. Please bear in mind you cannot use your vehicle to travel to a place for the purpose of walking or to take part in sporting activity.

Editorial note: The coronavirus pandemic is a very fast-moving situation and whilst the content and data were checked for accuracy at the time of publication (Friday 1st May 2020 at 12:30 pm), the political direction can change at any time, and the data is evolving constantly. For the latest information please refer to our Facebook page, join our Facebook community group.

Photo credit: La Zenia / Alexander Pichlmayr

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