President of the Valencian Community, Ximo Puig, addressed 5 million Valencians in a live briefing to announce new measures across the territory. Read the official text in Spanish here.
New measures have been introduced across the Valencian region – in effect midnight tonight until 9th December.
The measures mean COVID-19 restrictions are the SAME across the provinces of Alicante, Valencia and Castellón – except for Elda and Petrer, whose municipal borders will close at midnight.
(Read our write-up on Elda and Petrer here.)
The main new updates are:
- Bars, restaurants and café interiors must be reduced to 30% of floor capacity. Buffets and self-service is prohibited. Terrace capacity must be reduced to 50%.
- Shopping centre capacities must be reduced to 50%.
- Funerals and non-religious ceremonies/ celebrations must not exceed 25 people outdoors, or 15 people indoors. These rules exist for any type of celebration in public or private.
- No events with a crowd or large amount of people are permitted – the legal text says no ‘actividad multitudinaria’.
- Small businesses must reduce interior capacities to 50%; outdoor markets must reduce stalls to 50% of capacity. If the business’ office has various floors, the capacity is calculated per floor. If the capacity is at maximum, clients will not be allowed inside.
- Discotecas (nightclubs), dancehalls, karaoke bars and cocktail bars (with or without music) are suspended. Any type of spontaneous karaoke or amateur singing events are suspended.
- Hotels and touristic accommodation must not exceed 30% of interior capacitar. People who don’t live together may not spend the night nor use communal services.
- Cultural and touristic events must reduce capacities to 50%. Events that move from place to place (e.g. circuses) are not permitted.
- Physical contact is not allowed in sporting activities. Groups outdoors (without physical contact) can reach 30 people, or 20 indoors, so long as 30% of the interior capacity is not exceeded, and no contact.
- Museums, monuments and exhibitions must reduce capacity to 50%, only allowing groups of maximum of six.
- Cinemas, theatres and auditoriums must reduce interior capacity to 50%, with seats pre-booked and organised.
- Business events and conferences must respect 50% reduced interior capacity of their respective venues; no food and drink service is allowed.
- Casinos and betting halls must reduce interior capacity to 30%.
- Transfers and taxi drivers may allow passengers to fill the back three seats in vehicles up to nine passengers – passengers may sit next to the driver if the rear seats are full, provided the driver is not considered a ‘person of risk’.
- In vehicles with only one row of seats (lorries and vans), a maximum of two passengers are allowed, provided they wear masks and maintain as much distance as possible.
- Smoking is still prohibited in public places where a distance of 2m cannot be respected.
A complete list can be found here (in Spanish and Valenciano).
At 11am today, Friday, president Ximo Puig appealed to ‘common sense’ during rising COVID-19 infections in the second wave.
He said 5 million Valencians must ‘work together’ with the new restrictions, which stop short of home confinement.
“We don’t want to take compulsive measures; these are well-thought out and go in the right direction,” Puig said.
“Home confinement has consequences – it affects the economy, the environment, and our own health.”
He said residents are understandably ‘exhausted’ by changing restrictions – which is why the update today means measures are the same across the entire Valencian Community.
He said the Community still has the lowest accumulated incidence in peninsular Spain, but that hospitalisations are at 60% of the worst crisis moment back in April.
“We are working to save lives, save jobs, and protect your families, as we always have done,” Puig said.
Health councillor Ana Bareceló Chico joined Ximo Puig to say that 65% of all new infections have come from ‘social reunions’.
She said the Community does not want to shut down the hospitality industry, as 7 of Spain’s 17 autonomous communities have done.
“Until we have a vaccine, however, we must take non-pharmaceutical measures, which are appropriate,” Barceló said.