Ibiza faces night-time curfews and new lockdown as Balearic Islands 'hit hardest by local cases' in Europe

THE town of Ibiza and the popular holiday resort of San Antonio are both facing 15-day lockdowns and night-time curfews unless soaring coronavirus cases start to slow down.

The two locations are on the list of 15 places in the Balearics where the regional government is considering tightening up regulations early next week.

Spain has the highest cases of coronavirus in Europe at 488,513, and 29,234 deaths, and has been on the UK quarantine list since July 26.

The alert comes as Ibiza and Formentera recorded another 42 cases of coronavirus within 24 hours, bringing the active number of positives to 684. There are 43 people in hospital, of which two are in intensive care.

In the same 24-hour timescale, the Balearic Islands as a group registered 297 new cases and four deaths, bringing the total number of positives since the pandemic began to 9,067.

The country reported 8,959 new cases yesterday – the highest since March.

President Francina Armengol said she would be contacting all of the "hot spot" municipalities to explain that urgent action may be taken once the new laws are approved on Monday.

The Balearic president said the Ministry of Health intends to order special measures in the "hottest areas" or those with the highest incidence of coronavirus and they could last for 15 days.

She said it was absolutely vital to get the second wave of Covid-19 under control, with new cases now being reported once again in old people's homes and care centres.

The Balearic president appeared at a press conference with Minister of Health, Patricia Gómez to announce new security measures in the face of the increase in coronavirus infections in the Balearic Islands in recent weeks.

Patricia Gómez said the Balearic Islands would now have very demanding measures, very similar to those that existed during phase 1 of Spain's de-escalation period which started with the lifting of the State of Alarm on June 21.

Fifteen municipalities will be most affected which includes Palma and Ibiza.

What is the current travel advice for Spain?

Spain has been on the UK's quarantine list since July 26, with the Balearic and Canary Islands following suit on July 27.

This means anyone entering the UK from Spain must quarantine for two weeks.

There are no restrictions on anyone entering Spain from the UK.

The travel restrictions are unlikely to change any time soon as soaring numbers of Covid-19 cases are confirmed every day.

Just a week ago, the mandatory use of masks in the workplaces was enforced, along with the closure of beaches at night, the reduction of capacity of bars or restaurants to 50 per cent, the prohibition of smoking in public unless social distancing could be guaranteed and limits on social or family gatherings to a maximum of ten people, among other measures to try to stop infections.

The islands are the European region most affected by COVID, according to the classification of 173 sub-state entities on the continent updated periodically by The Economist.

The data, when looking at new cases per 100,000 population, put the Balearic Islands at 193, only lower than Madrid at 266.

The majority of regions hit the worst are Spain, with France and Moldova also on the list

Francina Armengol said health officials would be able to step in to any municipality, town, village or district to impose whatever measures they felt were needed, depending on the severity of the coronavirus outbreaks.

The new measures are "to try to stop transmission within the community and protect the population," she said.

It is planned to cut the number of people meeting up together socially to five, whether in public or private, and to increase coronavirus testing in any of the areas where special intervention is needed.

Around 100 soldiers are to be drafted in to help tracking teams find contacts of all those people who test positive, bringing the team to 340. This is a ratio of one tracker for every 3,500 inhabitants.

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