Coronavirus in Poland. What’s allowed and what’s not? The government is introducing further restrictions
The Prime Minister has announced the introduction of further restrictions. People will be allowed to go out only to take care of essentials. All gatherings of more than two people will be prohibited. The restrictions will also apply to shopping in stores. Violations of these provisions will be fined from 5 to 30 thousand PLN.
‘The current situation requires a great deal of discipline from us,’ stressed the Prime Minister.
All of us will be affected by the new regulation. It introduces a temporary ban on meetings with friends on the boulevards, on taking children to the playgrounds, barbecues and a walk in the parks. What is prohibited?
• A total ban on gatherings *of more than two people has been introduced. But this does not apply to families living together.
• *The distance between pedestrians must be at least 2 meters. Even between family and friends. There is an exception for parents with a child under 13 years old, as well as for people with disabilities and their guardians
• It is forbidden to leave the house. You can only go out to run essential errands, such as the necessary shopping or going to work. You can not take a walk on a beach, in a park or a boulevard.
•* All persons in public places must cover their mouth and nose* from the 16th of April. It does not have to be a face mask, a scarf or neckerchief is sufficient as well.
• The restriction applies to the number of passengers in transport. Half of the seats must remain unoccupied in all kind of vehicles if seating capacity is over 9. The limit applies not only to public transport but also to private carriers.
• All restrictions currently in place still apply. People violating them can be fined.
Ban on leaving the house
The slogan “stay at home” is not a recommendation, but an obligation. The Prime Minister informed that there would be a ban on leaving the house, except for going out in really urgent matters. These include doing the necessary shopping, going to work if the employer cannot organise remote work, or visiting a doctor.
Apart from walking the dog, the ban allows us to go out to help our family members. Also, if someone is working to fight the coronavirus as a volunteer, they can move around.
It is forbidden to walk on beaches and in green spaces. The ban applies to parks, lawns, boulevards, botanical gardens and zoos. Recent experience shows that many people have gathered in these places. Then the risk of the spread of coronavirus increases. The possibility to rent bicycles will be limited for the same reason.
Minors will not be able to be outside alone. They will be allowed to go out only with adults.
The police are supposed to check whether these rules are observed and assess whether someone is just going for a walk or if this is an essential matter. Violations of these provisions will be fined.
Ban on gatherings
A total ban on gatherings will be introduced. The new regulations prohibit the organisation of any meetings, events or gatherings. The exceptions include events in which only family members participate.
‘If we do not restrict our contacts to a minimum, we will not reduce the number of the infected, and consequently, we will not save more human lives. I am aware that the situation is difficult, but still I am asking for even greater restrictions,’ emphasized Łukasz Szumowski.
The distance between pedestrians must be at least 2 meters. Even between family and friends. There is an exception for parents with a child under 13 years old, as well as for people with disabilities and their guardians.
So you cannot go into the woods and meet your friends there for a barbecue. This was the case in the last few days, when the woods, parks and boulevards were full of people walking and gathering in groups.
A fine of up to PLN 5,000.00 can be imposed for violating these regulations. The restrictions on the number of people do not apply to workplaces. However, there should be a distance between employees of at least 1.5 meters. Workers must wear gloves and have access to disinfectants. The employer is responsible for providing the above safety measures.
Restrictions on the number of passengers in transport
The restrictions apply also to vehicles with a capacity of more than nine seats. Buses and trams will continue to run, but the number of commuters is limited. Only half of the seats can be taken. This is to keep the necessary distance between passengers.
Mateusz Morawiecki stressed that buses and trams cannot be overcrowded. They must be safe for the commuters.
‘Let’s leave public transport for those who must go to work, to the pharmacy, shop or for those who cannot work remotely,’ said the Prime Minister.
The restriction applies not only to public transport but also to private carriers. If the bus has 20 seats, then a maximum of 10 people can ride in it. The restrictions apply to vehicles with a capacity of more than 9 seats. It is worth emphasizing that the ban does not apply to cars.
Restrictions on the number of customers in stores, post offices, drug stores
Crowds in stores are forbidden. The maximum number of people who can enter is the product of all cash desks and number 3. For example, 30 people can enter the store if there are 10 cash desks. The whole number of cash desks is relevant, not the open ones.
Restrictions on markets and fairs look similar. No more than 3 customers per service point are allowed. Tighter rules will apply at post offices. No more than 2 people per counter.
Building hypermarkets will be closed on weekends.
All stores must be adapted to the new safety rules. All customers have to do shopping in single-use gloves from the 2d of April.
Between 10.00 and 12.00 shops and service points must be opened only for people above 65 years old. Elderly persons are at higher risk for coronavirus infection. Shops can serve all visitors during the rest of the working hours.
Hotels and hostels are closed. Daily rent of housing is prohibited.
New guests will not be able to check-in. However, there are several exceptions to the rule. Doctors, people in quarantine and isolation can use the services of rental housing for a short period. The restriction also does not apply to people who are in a delegation.
New quarantine rules
The new rules apply to everyone who lives with a quarantined person.
If one of your flatmates will be quarantined from April 1, because of
• coming back to Poland from abroad
• direct contact with an infected person
– you also need to stay in quarantine.
Closed shopping centres, restaurants, beauty and hair salons
An absolute ban on the operation of beauty, hair, piercings and tattoo salons is introduced. These services cannot be provided at home either. Rehabilitation treatment and massage services are suspended both in state and private institutions. As an exception, there may be a situation when rehabilitation activities can to be suspended for health reasons.
All restrictions currently in place have been maintained. Shopping centres, cinemas, pubs and restaurants are closed. Restaurants may only provide food for takeout. Border controls still apply, flights and mass events have been cancelled. People returning from abroad will be quarantined.
‘We want the misfortune, that swept the world, to leave as quickly as possible. We hope to start a gradual return to normal economic life, perhaps, in April.,’ said Mateusz Morawiecki. ‘It all depends on how responsibly each approaches the restrictions imposed..’
Zobacz też: Polityka w obliczu koronawirusa. Poseł PO Artur Łącki: jestem rozczarowany
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