SPAIN’S 15-day official state of alert due to the major coronavirus crisis means the Government has imposed extraordinary restrictions countrywide on movement and daily life to protect public health and safety, contain the spread of Covid-19 and to reinforce the public health system.
Staying at home and exceptions
Everyone is expected to stay inside their homes unless they have a valid reason for going out. People are allowed to circulate on public streets to buy food, pharmaceuticals and essential goods, for assistance at medical centres, services and establishments, to get to a workplace to be able to work and to return to their normal place of residence.
Also permitted is going out when it is to care for the elderly, children, people with special needs, the disabled or those who are especially vulnerable, and to go to financial or insurance institutions.
The circulation of private vehicles for the above and to fill up at service stations is allowed.
Further exceptions to the obligation to stay at home are a cause of force majeure or situations of need.
Activities have to be carried out individually, with the exception of accompanying people with a disability or for another justifiable reason.
All public and private schools, universities and education centres have been closed, but online educational activities or distance learning continue where possible.
Open and shut
All businesses have had to close with the exception of those selling food and drink and essential items, pharmaceuticals, medication, optical, orthopaedic and hygiene products, the press, vehicle fuel, technological and telecommunications equipment, animal food, internet, telephone and correspondence businesses, launderettes and dry cleaner’s. All activities or establishments the authorities consider could represent a contagion risk are shut.
Consuming products on business establishment premises is not allowed, and customers are employees have to remain one metre apart from each other.
The doors are closed to all museums, libraries, monuments, entertainment venues, sports facilities and leisure outlets.
Wining and dining establishments can only do home deliveries, and all fiestas and processions have been suspended.
Civil and religious ceremonies
Any civil or religious ceremony has to be in accordance with the measures on avoiding gatherings of people, and with the guarantee people are at least one metre apart from each other.
Public transport is still running to enable people to get to work if they have to and to access basic services, but has been reduced by at least 50 per cent, a percentage which could be further modified. Operators are required to take measures to ensure passengers are well separated and to clean vehicles daily in accordance with Health Ministry recommendations.
What’s more, online ticket sale systems have to include a message advising people not to travel unless it’s urgent.
Companies should tell their staff to work from home where possible. Exceptions are healthcare staff or those who work in the care of the elderly, or employees of one of the essential services, including public transport, supermarkets and pharmacies.
Enforcement and fines
Law enforcement and State Security forces are ensuring compliance with the extraordinary restrictions. People who do not obey the rules could face fines of up to €600,000 or even a one-year prison sentence in the most serious of cases.