18th Aug 2020
The virus is as deadly today as it was before, warns Taoiseach Micheál Martin, as new Covid-19 restrictions are announced
On Thursday, the Irish government announced a fresh set of restrictions in the latest efforts to combat the spread of Covid-19, after there were over 512 new cases announced over the past four days. The National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET) advised an emergency set of measures which the government will follow for the next three and a half weeks, until September 13th.
“There is no situation where you can be absolutely safe from this disease and this virus, unless you stay in your house and meet nobody. And we can’t continue on like that.” But the fewer people you come into contact with, the lower the risk, ” added acting Chief Medical Officer Dr Ronan Glynn at the press conference on Thursday.
Taoiseach @MichealMartinTD is making a statement on #Covid19 following today’s Cabinet meeting | Live #coronavirus blog: https://www.rte.ie/news/coronavirus/2020/0818/1159815-covid-19-blog/ https://twitter.com/i/broadcasts/1YqxoRWRkLvJv
— RTÉ News (@rtenews) August 18, 2020
Below is the list of new restrictions, which are effective immediately. The Taoiseach has also said the government will publish a new roadmap to recovery before September 13th, detailing how the country can live alongside the virus.
“The evidence is that a large number of people are acting as if the virus is no threat to them, or that it’s OK to take a few more risks.”
- All home gatherings are limited to six people from three households.
- Outdoor gatherings are limited to groups of 15 people, down from 200.
- Indoor events are limited to six people, down from 50, except for religious services and businesses such as shops and restaurants which are subject to different rules.
- Weddings are exempt from the new measures, meaning they can go ahead with gatherings of 50 people.
- Restaurants, cafes and bars serving food can remain open but must close at 11.30pm.
Gardaí will be given greater powers to police social gatherings in pubs, restaurants and at private house parties.
Older and vulnerable people:
- Those over the age of 70 are being asked to exercise judgement, and limit social interactions, avoid public transport and to shop during designated hours.
- Those over 70 or with vulnerable health conditions/those medically compromised should avoid hotel stays.
Work and travel
- All businesses should facilitate remote working if they can with and workers are being urged to work from home where possible.
- People are advised to avoid public transport except for essential journeys.
- People from different households travelling in the same car have been asked to wear face coverings.
- Arrangements for school transport will proceed as planned.
- The advice remains to avoid non-essential travel.
- Covid-19 testing at airports will be randomised, while locator forms will go electronic. Follow up calls for people isolating are also to be increased.
- All sporting events are to be held behind closed doors.
- No spectators are permitted to attend sporting events and there must be strict avoidance of social gatherings before and after events.
- Sports training can continue following the current public health guidelines.
Read more: Guidelines issued for weddings in post Covid-19 Ireland
Read more: ‘The world has adjusted to our normal’ – how it feels to have a child with special needs during Covid-19
Read more: ‘Zero-Covid island’: Scientists say eradication of Covid-19 is the best way forward
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