Severity: Critical Alert

Entry/Exit: Cayman Islands extends and revises varied curfew measures through May 1 to curb spread of COVID-19. Other restrictions remain in place.

This alert affects Cayman Islands

This alert began 17 Apr 2020 09:40 GMT and is scheduled to expire 01 May 2020 23:59 GMT.

  • Incident: Restrictions
  • Location(s): Territorywide (map)
  • Time Frame: Through at least May 1
  • Impact: Significant transport and business disruptions, increased security

Summary
Authorities in the Cayman Islands have extended and revised their movement restrictions and curfew measures, effective 1900 April 17-0500 May 1. The measures are part of the territory's efforts to combat the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19). A hard curfew will be enforced 1900-0500 nightly for the duration of the extension, with 24-hour curfews imposed April 19 and 26. Residents are not to leave their homes during these times unless the Commissioner of Police has exempted them. A soft curfew will be in place 0500-1900 daily (except April 19 and 26) during which time residents will be allowed to stock up on essential goods, according to the first letter of their surnames:

  • Surnames beginning with A-K: Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays
  • Surnames beginning with L-Z: Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays


People who work in essential businesses or services will be allowed to leave their homes for the duration of the curfew. Other restrictions, including the suspension of public transport, a ban of gatherings of two or more people, and the closure of all beaches, will remain in place through at least May 1. Residents will be allowed to exercise outside their homes for up to 1.5 hours a day 0515-0645, Monday-Saturday.

Officials had previously announced a ban for all foreign nationals arriving at the islands. As a result of this ban, authorities suspended all international passenger flights at Owen Roberts International Airport (GCM) and Charles Kirkconnell International Airport (CYB) until further notice. Officials have also banned cruises and private vessels from entering the Cayman Islands until at least May 16. Cargo flights, couriers, air ambulance services, and cargo ships continue to operate. Fishing vessels will not be allowed into the Cayman Islands, and the crews of fishing vessels that had departed before the current restrictions were imposed will need to quarantine on board their vessels for 14 days upon their return.

The measures in place will significantly impact business and transport throughout the territory; a larger than usual police presence is likely. All restrictions are subject to amendment at short notice.

Background and Analysis
The measures taken by the officials in the Cayman Islands correspond with similar actions taken by other regional governments in recent days in response to the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19). COVID-19 is a viral respiratory disease caused by infection with the SARS-CoV-2 virus (previously known as 2019-nCoV). Symptoms occur 1-14 days following exposure (average of 3-7 days). These symptoms include fever, fatigue, cough, difficulty breathing, sometimes worsening to pneumonia and kidney failure - especially in those with underlying medical conditions. On March 11, the WHO declared the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic.

Advice
Strictly heed the instructions of authorities. Avoid all nonessential operations in the areas impacted by the measures. Confirm appointments. Remain courteous and cooperative if approached and questioned by law enforcement officers.

Emphasize basic health precautions, especially frequent handwashing with soap and water, or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are unavailable. Practice good coughing/sneezing etiquette (i.e., covering coughs and sneezes with a disposable tissue, maintaining distance from others, and washing hands). There is no evidence that the influenza vaccine, antibiotics, or antiviral medications will prevent this disease, highlighting the importance of diligent basic health precautions.

Resources
World Health Organization (WHO): www.who.int

Cayman Islands Government: www.gov.ky

Cayman Islands - COVID-19 Guidelines: www.exploregov.ky/coronavirus