The parks remain closed in Madrid, so runners and cyclists outside the capital’s Retiro Park used the wide avenue as a running track, occupying lanes normally used for traffic. Some buses and cars had to honk their horns to move them.
The government has insisted that people respect the social distance of 2 meters or 6 feet, especially runners and cyclists who are supposed to exercise alone, but CNN observed many people gathered.
At 10:25 a.m. local time, a Madrid municipal van stopped next to a cyclist and an officer leaned out the window and yelled, “You were supposed to be home half a year ago hour. Half an hour ago! “
However, the police continued to fine and left.
Starting today, people over the age of 14 can take one-hour walks, accompanied by one person, once a day within half a mile of their home, or sport like cycling alone in their city. They are authorized to do so from 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. and from 8:00 p.m. at 11 p.m.
The elderly had their turn a little later, with a special schedule to avoid the crowds: from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. and in the evening, from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez posted a message on Twitter on Saturday asking the Spanish to exercise caution: “Today we are taking a new step in relaxing imprisonment, but we must do so with caution and responsibility. The virus is still there. We have to follow the guidelines on hygiene and social distancing, “he said.
The government has asked people to wear masks if they cannot observe strict social distancing.
Spain’s state of emergency, with the strictest containment rules in Europe, will continue until May 9. New “relaxation” measures give most Spaniards more daily time outside their home than they have had since isolation began on March 14, after which only short trips were authorized to go shopping and go to the pharmacy.
As of Monday 4 May, Spain will begin the “zero phase” of its transition to a “new normal”, as Prime Minister Sánchez announced last week. Some stores will be allowed to open for a limited number of customers, by appointment only, and some restaurants will be allowed to open with limited takeout service.
And just as the government has further relaxed the containment measures put in place due to the virus, the latest data from Spain shows that the number of coronavirus deaths for the country has reached 25,100 since the start of the pandemic. The number of new deaths reported is 276, an increase of 1% from the previous day, said Spanish director of health emergencies, Fernando Simon, during his daily briefing.
This is a slightly smaller increase than Friday, with 281 new deaths.
The total number of cases confirmed by Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) tests is 216,582 while the new daily infections reported are 1,147 – an increase of 0.5% from the previous day, added Simon.
Simon reiterated that Spain is continuing a favorable trend but warned that there were still risks as the country entered the next phase of the de-escalation process.
Figures from the Ministry of Health reported on Saturday that the number of health workers infected with the virus was 41,785, with 546 additional cases reported since Friday.
Al Goodman wrote from Spain, Helena De Moura in Atlanta and Claudia Rebaza in London.