The country of Spain has been fighting a hard battle again, the Covid-19 pandemic. After reopening the country after a long and arduous first wave of the virus, the country has once again seen infections climbing at a rapid pace. This has resulted in the country declaring a national state of emergency and implementing a curfew during the night-time to help try to control the virus from spreading further.
The announcement was made by Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez on Sunday that effective immediately between 23:00 and 06:00 hours that people would be restricted to their homes. The only exception will be for essential workers or those being taken to hospital for treatment.
In addition to the curfew, Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez stated that local authorities have the authority to restrict travel to others and from other regions. Sanchez has asked parliament to extend the usual 15 days such as order is in effect to six months.
Spain hit hard during first wave
Spain suffered substantially during the first wave of the pandemic and was one the hardest hit in Europe beyond that of Italy. The country implemented one of the toughest lockdowns in the world, which while successful, it was not enough to prevent a second wave much like many other countries in Europe and around the world.
Sánchez also stated that some regions would have the ability to put into effect a one hour of flexibility to the new curfew order. Additionally, determining restrictions on movement between different districts will be the responsibility of regional leaders and is expected to be impacted by the need for work and residences medial needs.
Furthermore, the new measures will have an impact on the number of people allowed to gather in public and in private, which under the order is restricted to a maximum of six people. While addressing the nation on national television on Sunday, Sánchez said “The situation we are going through is extreme. It is the most serious in the past half century.”
Spain has seventeen regions and all, but half were asking for increased restrictions, and that those restrictions apply to the country as a while, which the only exception being the Canary Islands. The same actions were taken in the first wave and considering the country has seen 35,000 die and over 1 million diagnosed with the virus, the restrictions are paramount to stopping its spread.
Italy has also announced new restrictions that go into effect on Sunday as that country begins to see an increase in second wave coronavirus infections. The steady increase in cases is already having an impact on the countries health care system. Considering the effect the first wave had on the country, taking aggressive measures to ward off the second wave is critical for the country.