‘Stay home’: Valencia town returns to lockdown after spike in cases

'Stay home': Valencia town returns to lockdown after spike in cases
Police at a checkpoint on a road in Spain. Photo: AFP
Health authorities in Valencia have imposed a new lockdown on residents in the town of Benigánim after a surge in coronavirus infections.

New lockdown restrictions that include the closure of bars and restaurants were imposed for a period of 14 days beginning on Monday afternoon.

The town of just under 6,000 residents has seen 51 people test positive by Sunday, a cumulative incidence surge from 34.24 cases per 100,000 inhabitants to 994.46 cases per 100,000 within a week.

 

Ana Barceló, Valencia’s regional health minister said the increase in cases in the last seven days “shows a significant spread of the virus in Benigànim, and indicates a sustained community transmission.

“This is why it is necessary to adopt these temporary measures, with the aim of stopping and mitigating the risk of contagion,” she explained. “It’s a difficult decision, but necessary.”

Amparo Canals, the mayor of Bengànim urged residents to “stay home” and follow the rules while the outbreak is brought under control.

Although people are not strictly confined to their homes and can go outside to take exercise or visit the supermarket, they are unable to leave enter or leave municipal limits of the town except for reasons that include; returning to place of residence, visiting the doctor, going to work, or  taking care of elderly or dependents.

People are still able to transit the town by driving through it as long as they do not stop there.

The start of schools and nurseries will be delayed until after the confinement period and all social centres such as day centres and sports clubs will be suspended as well as events such as weddings, baptisms and communions.

Funerals will be limited to 15 people outdoors and 10 people within a closed space.

ANALYSIS: It feels like Spain is going back in time


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