After all the talk about yesterday, the Irish government didn’t mess about. There was no tricking and rooting with time periods or mixing up levels. Oh no, we’re going full steam into a Level 5 lockdown for 6 weeks, as recommended by NPHET two weeks ago and again at the weekend.
The spectacular volte-face was due to the ever-increasing numbers of new cases and Covid hospital admissions. In a televised address to the nation, Taoiseach Micheál Martin announced the new measures which will come into effect at midnight on Wednesday.
The first thing to note is that this is not quite the same as the initial lockdown in the Spring. There are modifications. Chief amongst them is the fact that schools and childcare facilities will remain open. So, what are the key points we should all know since we’re all back in this together again?
What Will This Lockdown Look Like?
- No visitors to home or garden but you can meet up with 1 other household outdoors
- Weddings – Max. 25 guests
- No indoor or outdoor organised events
- No indoor sports training
- Outdoor sports training – individual only except for school-aged children who can continue non-contact sports training in pods of up to 15
- No matches or events except inter-county matches, horse and greyhound racing and professional elite sports behind closed doors
- No visits to care homes – except for compassionate or critical reasons
- No religious services – online only
- Funerals – Max. 10 mourners
- Bars, cafes, restaurants – takeaway only
- Hotels, B&Bs – essential stays only
- Retail and personal services – essential retail only
- Schools, childcare facilities – open
- Adult higher education – online only except where onsite teaching is essential
- Workplaces – work from home except for essential workers
- Travel – stay within 5K of your home except for essential travel
- Public transport – use it only where essential
- Swimming pools and gyms – closed
- Indoor cultural venues – closed
- Playgrounds and parks – open
- Over 70s and vulnerable people – limit social contacts
- Household support bubbles allowed for those living alone or parenting alone
It’s going to be tough but the hope is that taking these measures now will allow for more freedom during the busy Christmas season. The efforts being made now will once again flatten the curve. Reducing the numbers of new Cobid-19 cases now will bring numbers to a manageable level so that hospitals will not be overwhelmed during the normally busy Winter period.
Make sure you’re getting correct information on Covid-19 developments. For all regulations please check https://www.gov.ie/en/campaigns/c36c85-covid-19-coronavirus/