Severity: Critical Alert

Entry/Exit: Gibraltar further eases COVID-19 restrictions June 1. Shops and restaurants reopen; some restrictions remain.

This alert affects Gibraltar

This alert began 01 Jun 2020 14:18 GMT and is scheduled to expire 15 Jun 2020 23:59 GMT.

  • Incident: COVID-19 restrictions
  • Location(s): Territorywide (map)
  • Date: June 1
  • Impact: Business and travel disruptions

Summary
Authorities announced June 1 that the territory is entering Phase 3 of its plan to roll back measures aimed at combating coronavirus disease (COVID-19); the government is no longer classifying the issue as a "Major Incident". Shops will now be permitted to open between 0900-1900. Restaurants will also reopen, providing they have a permit from the Director of Public Health, though seats will need to be pre-booked. Other nonessential facilities, including gyms, are also open subject to requirements on social distancing; primary schools have now partially reopened to some year groups. Bars remain closed.

Public transport services have resumed, though passengers are required to wear facemasks on buses. Gatherings of more than 12 people remain prohibited and strict social distancing rules are in place. The government continues to advise that persons over 70 years of age remain at home. While nonessential businesses may reopen, access to some premises may require additional time as management adheres to the social distancing guidelines.

The land border with Spain is currently open for essential cross-border workers only. Gibraltar International Airport (GIB) is operational for British Airways (BA) flights to London, UK, though it is operating a greatly reduced schedule. Travelers who have recently visited several locations, including Cambodia, China, Hong Kong, Iran, Italy, Japan, South Korea, Laos, Macau, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, and Vietnam, are required to self-isolate on arrival for a minimum of 14 days.

Background and Analysis
The measures are similar to actions taken by other European governments in response to the spread of 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.

Advice
Follow all official instructions. Abide by official health and safety measures. Reconfirm all travel arrangements. Arrive at the airport early to prevent your seat being reallocated to a standby passenger. Consider delaying traveling if experiencing symptoms associated with COVID-19, as they may prompt increased scrutiny and delays. Liaise with trusted contacts for further updates and guidance. Maintain contact with your diplomatic representation. Ensure contingency plans account for further disruptive measures or extensions of current restrictions. Reconsider and reconfirm nonemergency health appointments.

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.


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