October 21, 2021

The Queens County Citizen

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After 7 weeks in captivity, the Spaniards showed up to walk, run and bike

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Runners outside Madrid’s Retiro Park, which remains closed, on Saturday morning. Credit: Al Goodman / CNN

At 6 am local time in Spain, many people took to the streets to run, bike or walk for up to one kilometer after seven weeks in confinement.

The park remained closed in Madrid, so runners and cyclists outside Retiro park in the capital used extensive roads as racetrack, occupying lanes that are normally used for traffic. Some buses and cars have to honk before they move.

The government insisted that the community maintain a social distance of 2 meters or 6 feet, especially runners and cyclists who were supposed to exercise alone, but CNN observed many people gathering together.

At 10:25 local time, a Madrid van pulled up next to a cyclist and an officer leaned out the window to shout:

You should have gone home half an hour ago. Half an hour ago! ”

But the police did not stop issuing fines and left.

Starting today, people over the age of 14 can walk an hour, accompanied by one person, once a day close to their home, or exercise like riding a bicycle alone, in their city. They are allowed to do this from 6 am to 10 am and starting at 8 pm. until 11 p.m.

Some ran on the road, where there was little traffic, because Spaniards were allowed out to exercise for the first time in seven weeks.
Some ran on the road, where there was little traffic, because Spaniards were allowed out to exercise for the first time in seven weeks. Credit: Al Goodman / CNN

The elderly get a turn later, with a special schedule to avoid crowds: from 10 am to 12 pm. and from 7 pm to 8 pm

Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez sent a message via Twitter on Saturday morning asking Spaniards to be careful:

“Today we are taking a new step in the relaxation of confinement, but we must do it with care and responsibility. The virus still exists. We need to follow guidelines to maintain cleanliness and social, “he wrote.

The Spanish government is moving to further ease the country’s strict containment rules due to coronavirus earlier this week. Last weekend, children under 14 allowed to walk one hour every day with their parents.

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The government has asked residents to wear masks if they cannot observe tight social distances.

Some runners and cyclists wear masks when they are allowed out for solo training in their city.
Some runners and cyclists wear masks when they are allowed out for solo training in their city. Credit: Al Goodman / CNN

Spain’s state of emergency, with the strictest containment rules in Europe, will continue until May 9. The new “relaxation” act gives most Spaniards more time outside their homes every day than they have had since the lockup began on March 14, after which only a short trip was permitted to shop for food and to the pharmacy.

From Monday, May 4, Spain will begin the “Zero Phase” of its transition to “new normality” as announced by Prime Minister Sánchez last week. Some shops will be allowed to open for a number of clients, only with appointments, and some restaurants will be allowed to open with limited takeaway services.

Cases in Spain have now reached 216,582 with 1,147 new infections. There are 25,100 deaths in the country with 276 more in the last day – a slightly smaller increase than yesterday when there were 281 new deaths.