Spain’s Balearic Islands regional government has said that as of Monday, July 13, the wearing of face masks will be compulsory at all times.
Residents and visitors in Ibiza, Mallorca, Menorca and Formentera will have to wear face masks even when the social distancing rules can be adhered to.
The move will see the Balearic Islands follow the region of Catalonia, which introduced the mandatory wearing of face masks on Thursday. At the moment the wearing of masks is only mandatory in spaces where a social distancing of 1.5 metres is not possible.
Under the new rules, a face mask must be worn correctly (covering both mouth and nose) at all times in public places whether indoors or outside, with a few exceptions. The exceptions include when you are eating and drinking, when you are on the beach or in the swimming pool, when practicing sport and while playing a wind instrument.
People who are unable to wear face masks for health reasons are exempt as to are those under the age of 6.
The full resolution will be published in the Official State Gazette (BOE), over the next few days and will lay out the ‘new normality’ decree passed by the Congress of Deputies, which sets out the rules for life post coronavirus lockdown.
The resolution will also set out a 70 people limit for social gatherings in outdoor environments and for 30 people in indoor spaces. Anyone who breaks these rules will receive a fine of up to 100 euros.
Patricia Gomez, the regional health chief, has said that the new measures are based on the fact that most of the Covid-19 patients in the Balearic Islands have either minor symptoms or are asymptomatic.
Speaking to Cadena Ser radio station on Thursday, she said the archipelago is “very fragile”, and that the number of people visiting the region is increasingly growing.
The Balearic Islands were the first to reopen their doors to international visitors and they continue to be a very popular holiday destination choice for many.
During her talk, Gomez also mentioned the results of a coronavirus prevalence study which showed that only 1.4% of residents on the Islands had developed antibodies for the virus, below the 5.2% national average. She also said that “The seroprevalence study shows that very few people in the Balearic Islands have contracted the coronavirus.”
President Francina Armengol’s Socialist Party (PSOE) government has prohibited the opening of nightclubs and party venues with a capacity for over 300 people. Pubs and clubs in the areas of Magaluf, San Antonio and Playa de Palma are also still banned from reopening, even if their capacity is lower.
They have also been preparing a proposal to put an end to all the illegal parties that have broken out in villas and country homes on the island in the last few days, and have needed security force intervention.
The latest figures from the regional health service show that there are only nine active Covid-19 outbreaks in the Balearic Islands, with 42 positive cases and 90 people who are being monitored due to having been in contact with someone who tested positive.
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