The Italian peninsula becomes a “red zone”: coronavirus restrictive measures extend all over Italy
In an attempt to combat the spread of the coronavirus in Italy, the government has issued a new decree on March 9th, effective from March 10th, whereby the whole nation becomes a “protected zone”, as the Italian Prime Minister calls it. The restrictive coronavirus containment measures, that were only in place in the region of Lombardy and 14 other Italian provinces till yesterday, are now effective all over the country. Italy is under a total lockdown with strict restrictions on movements, gatherings and events, urging people to stay at home. As of April 1st, the lockdown has been extended to April 13th. If you’re living or staying in Rome or anywhere else in Italy, here are the details of the new decree concerning the coronavirus in Italy.
The new restrictions
We’re constantly getting asked which areas are in lockdown in Italy. After the decree of March 9th, all of Italy is now under lockdown – the emergency measures have been extended nationwide. And after the decree of March 11th, all shops, restaurants and bars are now closed, too, except for services for primary needs. These measures bring new restrictions throughout the whole country:
Restrictions on travel
The decree places restrictions on all personal travel that isn’t for essential work, or for health or family emergencies. Trips are allowed for people returning to their homes. The government urges all Italians and expats to stay at home.
What if I need to travel throughout Italy?
All movements within and outside cities, regions and the whole country are to be avoided. You are only allowed to travel throughout Italy for proven work reasons, for health and family emergencies or if you need to return home. If you are traveling for one of the latter reasons with any means of transport, you’re going to have to sign an official police document where you declare you are traveling for one of these reasons. You need to print, sign and take this self-certified form wherever you go. It is necessary to show the self-certified document when asked by authorities, who are regularly carrying out checks in trains, highways, airports and streets. You can download the official document by clicking here.
Restrictions on gatherings
After pictures of people gathering at the beach, in piazzas and in restaurants, the decree of March 9th enforced a new restrictive measure on gatherings. As of March 10th, parties and gatherings, gatherings in public places or open to the public are prohibited everywhere. This includes weddings and funerals. All events in Italy have been suspended, including the Serie A.
Grocery shopping and pharmacies
Grocery stores remain open and there is no need to run to the supermarket to stock up. While the decree urges everyone to limit movements, grocery stores and pharmacies remain open. You absolutely can go to the pharmacy or to the grocery store without any problems. You are still required to keep a meter’s distance from one another and the stores have to operate using a limited access approach.
Schools, Universities and Work
All schools and universities will remain closed till April 13, 2020. While public and private employers are recommended to promote:
- ordinary leave
- or allow smart working (where possible)
Restaurants, Bars and Shops
In accordance with the decree of March 11th, all restaurants, bars and shops are now closed. This doesn’t include Tabacchis and a few other stores that are still allowed to operate (including grocery stores and pharmacies). While you cannot go to restaurants in person, food delivery services are still operational.
Can I go jogging?
You can go jogging near your house and take your dog for a walk but not in parks or villas as Mayor Raggi has ordered the closure of all enclosed parks and villas. Villa Borghese is off the list, but it will be constantly under police control. In any case, you must always take your self-certified form with you and you must go by yourself, not in a group, and always maintain a meter’s distance from other people.
Whoever has symptoms of a respiratory infection or a fever above 37.5°C is urged to stay at home. Call your doctor and limit social interactions. If you have just returned from one of the areas indicated at risk by the WHO, you must notify the ASL. Finally, anyone who has been in contact with a patient who tested positive to the coronavirus, is positive but shows no symptoms, or has mild symptoms, is prohibited to leave their home.
What happens if I don’t follow the restrictions?
If you violate the restrictive measures on travel, you could be arrested for up to 3 months or face a fine from €400 to €3000. There’s the possibility of also being charged with culpable crimes against public health. Fines and charges are far more drastic for those who don’t respect quarantine measures.
Act responsibly and stay at home
The decree, which is also called #Iorestoacasa (I stay at home), has been promoted by hundreds of celebrities including Tiziano Ferro, Bocelli, Fiorello, Chiara Ferragni and Fedez who have been explaining the importance of staying at home in this difficult situation. The virus is highly contagious and the only way to stop it from spreading is to limit social interactions as much as possible. We urge you to stay at home – the time to go out and relive Italy and the Eternal City will come sooner if we all do our part and act responsibly.