THE numbers don’t lie… for the past few days Spain has been registering upwards of 8,000 cases of COVID-19 every 24 hours.
But while the death rate is nowhere near what was seen in March and April, some towns have decided to seal themselves off and ask residents to confine themselves to their homes.
While any significant jump in caseload is concerning, what health experts fear most is ‘community transmission’.
This is when the spread of the virus appears to have taken on its own momentum within a community and health officials are unable to locate the source of infections.
The latest town to order a form of lockdown is Santoña in Cantabria.
With 64 active cases and a population of around 11,000, the town decreed yesterday that it will be forbidden to leave or enter the municipality without a justified reason.
Meanwhile, hotels, sports facilities, cultural and leisure activities will all be banned for the next 14 days.
The new measures are expected to be made official in the Official Gazette of Cantabria today.
Beniganim, in the La Vall d’Albaida region of Valencia, has been in confinement since August 30.
Since Sunday, after registering a total of 75 cases of COVID-19 (among a population of around 5,800), it has been forbidden to leave or exit the town.
Exceptions are made for those travelling for work or for justified reasons such as going to work or to provide care.
The lockdown lite is expected to last for two weeks and also orders the closure of restaurants, parks and gyms.
The re-opening of schools has also been postponed until further notice.
Salamanca and Valladolid
Salamanca and Valladolid are the largest cities to impose lockdown-like measures.
Since midnight on September 3, both have reverted to situations ‘practically identical’ to Phase 1 of the nationwide de-escalation plan seen some months ago.
It comes after they registered COVID-19 incidence rates of 19.1 (Valladolid) and 17.3 (Salamanca) per 10,000 inhabitants.
The capacities of bars, restaurants and inside and outdoor events have been reduced while contact sports are prohibited.
Cantalejo and Cascarral del Rio, Segovia
Both Cantalejo and Cascarral del Rio have been on lockdown since August 21.
The measures appear to have been effective with both dropping their active COVID-19 caseloads from 80 to nine.
Friday will mark 14 days of confinement in a situation the regional minister of health Veronica Casado labelled as ‘favourable’.
Villanueva de la Concepcion, Malaga
Meanwhile near the Costa del Sol, health experts fear community transmission has taken hold in Villanueva de la Concepcion.
On August 31, the town hall asked residents to avoid unnecessary travel to other towns and to avoid meeting up with friends and families wherever possible.
It has also announced that parks will be closed to avoid groups of people from gathering.
“The general population is asked to carry out a voluntary confinement and to be as rigid and strict as possible,” the mayor said.
Experts in the town believe an asymptomatic super-spreader is exacerbating coronavirus contagion as they are unable to locate the source of several infections.
The small town of Lorca in Murcia is close to ordering lockdown measures after registering 61 new COVID-19 cases on Tuesday.
Mayor Jose Mateos said any new measures would be announced in the next few days as the evolution of the virus is monitored.