Rules for a partial lockdown introduced in Romania

At a meeting on Thursday evening, the Romanian Government adopted several new restrictions due to the exponential growth in new coronavirus cases, hitting 10,000 new cases in a single day. The emergency decree and the Government Decision that set forth the new nationwide measures were published on the National Gazette on Saturday and will take effect on Monday, November 9, for a period of 30 days.

One of the most important changes concerns nighttime travel, which will be banned from 11:00 p.m. until 5:00 a.m., while other rules cover the introduction of online learning in all schools and mandatory mask-wearing in all open spaces. Here is a full list of the new measures:

– Mask-wearing is obligatory in all public and commercial spaces, on public transport and at workplaces throughout the country for all people older than 5.

– All public institutions, as well as all public and private economic operators, must switch to remote work wherever possible; where this is not possible, the operators must organize work so that staff is divided into at least two groups, separated by a two-hour window between the start and end of each shift.

– All kindergartens and schools across the entire country will switch to online learning.

– Romanians may not leave their homes at night, between 11:00 p.m. and 5:00 a.m. However, those who work at night; need medical assistance that cannot be postponed or performed remotely; need to purchase medicine; and must take care of an elder, child, sick person or someone with disabilities may leave their home based on justifying documents – work ID, certificate issued by an employer or statement of their own responsibility. People who are traveling outside of their hometown by train, plane, bus or other transportation may also be outside at night if they can prove their travel with tickets.

– It is forbidden to organize meetings on the occasion of holidays and anniversaries, as well as parties, in closed and/or open spaces or in public and/or private spaces.

– Indoor markets will be closed. If a market is closed, the tables of the agricultural producers will be set up in open public spaces, on streets near the market. The city halls are also obliged to organize open-air movable markets at other locations.

– All economic operators that carry out trade activities or services in closed and/or open spaces, as well as in public and/or private spaces, are obliged to carry out their activity between 5:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m. However, pharmacies, gas stations, and economic operators with home delivery may be open during normal business hours but must respect all sanitary protective measures.

– The preparation, sale and consumption of food and alcoholic as well as non-alcoholic beverages are allowed in specially designed spaces outside of buildings or outdoors. It is necessary to ensure a minimum distance of 2 meters between the tables and a maximum of six people per table if they are from different families.

The new measures are valid for 30 days; however, depending on the evolution of the pandemic in Romania, they may be extended.

Title image: In Romania, all schools and kindergartens switched to online learning

Author: Orsi Sarány