MALAGA province has entered alert Level 4 due to an increase in coronavirus figures, bringing tougher measures for businesses and services.
It means all municipalities in the province must close their playgrounds from today.
Meanwhile, bars and restaurants cannot exceed 30% capacity indoors or 75% on their terraces.
The four-tier system, created by the Junta de Andalucia, places towns and provinces in different risk levels according to their infection rates, hospitalisation rates and more.
There is also Level 4.2 for areas exceeding a 14-day cumulative incidence rate of 1,000 cases per 100,000 people.
Shops, meanwhile, must limit capacity to 50%, while in gyms it has been reduced to 40%.
On public transport, there must be seat between each passenger while carriages or buses may not exceed 50% of their standing capacity.
These measures will be irrelevant for the municipalities found in Level 4.2, which will have to close all non-essential businesses, along with closing their outer perimeters.
The towns in Malaga in the highest possible alert level are: Alhaurin el Grande, Ardales, Coin, Monda, Alameda, Almargen, Teba, Alfarnatejo, Benamocarra, El Borge, Salares, Algatocín, Cartajima and Igualeja.
New measures across Andalucia
It comes as new COVID-19 restrictions are in force across Andalucia from today, with some areas facing tougher measures than others.
The new rules became official overnight after being published in the Official Gazette of the Junta de Andalucia (BOJA), and will remain in place until at least February 1.
President of the region Juanma Moreno said he will be meeting with the so-called committee of experts on a daily basis and will toughen up restrictions if necessary.
As of Sunday, travel between Andalucia’s eight provinces is prohibited, unless you have a justified reason for doing so and can prove it i.e work, medical or legal reasons.
Any town with an incidence rate that exceeds 500 cases per 100,000 inhabitants will also have its borders closed, banning people entering and exiting, save for exemptions.
In Malaga, these towns are: Teba, Almargen, Monda, Alameda, Salares, Ardales, Igualeja, El Borge, Benamocarra, Cartajima, Coin, Alfarnatejo, Alhaurin el Grande, Algatocin, Alcaucin, Alfarnate, Villanueva del Rosario, Moclinejo, Gaucin , Alora, Farajan, Sayalonga, Comares, Velez-Malaga, Genalguacil, Ronda, Algarrobo, Mollina, Cañete la Real, Benarraba, Manilva, Alhaurin de la Torre, Canillas de Albaida, Villanueva del Trabuco and Arenas.
Any municipality with a rate of 1,000 cases per 100,000 people must also close all non-essential businesses, including bars and restaurants.
People not covered by the closure of the provincial borders include federated, high level or high performance athletes, coaches, judges or federated referees, who need to travel for competitions. They must have a sports license or a relevant certificate and cannot come from a municipality with an incidence rate of 500 cases per 100,000 people or higher.
Residents can also travel to skiing stations or resorts as long as they can present their already purchased ski passes and are not travelling from a closed off municipality.
It means you can travel, in theory, from Huelva, Malaga, Sevilla or any other province, to the Sierra Nevada ski resort in Granada, as long as you can show your ski pass.
Other exceptions include the following:
- Assistance to health centres, services and establishments..
- Attending university, teaching and educational centres, including nursery schools.
- Returning to your place of habitual or family residence.
- Assisting and caring for the elderly, minors, dependents, people with disabilities or especially vulnerable people.
- Travelling to financial and insurance entities or petrol stations in neighbouring territories.
- Required or urgent actions before public, judicial or notarial bodies.
- Renewals of permits and official documentation, as well as other administrative procedures that cannot be postponed.
- Taking official exams or tests that cannot be postponed.
- Due to force majeure or situation of need.
- Any other activity of a similar nature, duly accredited.
Social gatherings are also limited to four people, be it inside or outside of the home. This can be exceeded only if you live together and are already more than four.
Other exemptions are work, educational and university environments.
Meanwhile, shops, bars and restaurants must close at 6pm, however the latter can continue to deliver food until 11:30pm, with last orders at 10:30pm.
People may also collect food from restaurants until 9:30pm.
For now, the curfew remains at 10pm to 6am while Madrid will weigh up whether or not to allow the region to move the starting time to 8pm.
Moreno has also asked if he can implement a home confinement in municipalities with a cumulative incidence rate of 1,000 cases per 100,000 people or above. This has yet to be approved.