The Canary Islands Government will activate increased controls this weekend to guarantee the use of masks as one of the most fundamental measures of protection against COVID 19. Special vigilance is to be carried out at recreational and festive gatherings such as bars, nightspots, Private parties, and celebrations in open spaces.

Members of the Policia Canaria, Local Police and State Security Forces, including the Guardia Civil, will be deployed in a visible show of enforcement. Failure to use masks as instructed will carry a penalty fine of up to €100.

The Government pointed out that on the Canary Islands the use of masks is already mandatory in indoor public spaces and also in open spaces, provided that the minimum interpersonal distance of at least 1.5 meters cannot be kept, as clearly stated in the prevention recommendations established within the Government Agreement of June 19, 2020. In spaces such as shopping centers, masks are mandatory, since it is not always possible to guarantee the minimum safe distance.

This obligation must be combined with hygiene and hand-washing measures necessary to reinforce actions aimed at limiting, and with luck even preventing, the transmission of the virus on the islands, in sincere hope of preventing new outbreaks of COVID-19.

This important physical protection measure against COVID-19 is obligatory for everyone over six years of age, with the exception of situations stipulated by Royal Decree Law 21/2020, such as some types of respiratory disease, disability or dependency, which must be demonstrated by clear documentation or certification from a qualified medical professional, such as your doctor. Some types of exercise and individual outdoor sports, among other activities, may also be exempt.

The Canary Islands Government Ministry of Health have made direct appeals to the wider population to take responsibility and protect themselves against Covid-19 and, therefore, protect the most vulnerable members of the population, avoiding close contact even between family members. 40% of all new outbreaks in Spain have been caused by family gatherings at which security measures have not been respected.

The Canary Islands Government have not ruled out having to adopt other more restrictive measures, if these steps prove insufficient in preventing a resurgence of the pandemic in the Canary Islands.

Everyone is reminded of how to try and avoid Covid-19 infection

– At all times, maintain an  interpersonal safety distance of at least 1.5 meters, minimum. This must be complied with, on public roads and in closed spaces and in any outdoors environment.

– It is recommended that everyone avoid indoor, or crowded places and remove themselves from close proximity to other people.

– Continuous and correct hand hygiene must be carried out to avoid contact with Covid-19 coronavirus and its spread. #NowWashYourHands

– The use of hygienic, preferably reusable, masks is highly recommended. For a mask to be used correctly, it must cover the mouth and nose completely at all times, fitting properly to the nose and chin so as to prevent the expulsion of respiratory secretions into the environment. #DoNotTouchYourFace