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Here are Italy’s new quarantine rules on jogging, walking and taking kids outside

Can you go for a jog or not? Can parents take children out to get some fresh air? The Italian government has issued new guidance after confusion over the quarantine rules.

Here are Italy's new quarantine rules on jogging, walking and taking kids outside
Photo: Alberto Pizzoli/AFP

Since national quarantine measures were enforced in Italy on March 12 there has been much confusion over whether you can go out for a run or even a walk, and whether parents can take children outside for some fresh air.

READ ALSO: The form you need to go outside under Italy's coronavirus rules

This has been especially unclear due to different regions imposing their own rules and individual police officers interpreting the new laws differently.

The Italian Interior Ministry on Tuesday sent out a circular to regional authorities clarifying how the rules should be enforced.

After numerous appeals to the government to let children outside for some fresh air after three weeks of quarantine, the government has said that it is allowing parents to take under-18s out for a short walk.

Each child can be accompanied by one adult – unless the children are siblings, in which case only one adult should be supervising them, the rules state.

Going out for a walk and a breath of fresh air near home is fine, though bike rides, games and other activities are still not allowed, the Interior Ministry clarified on Tuesday.

Elderly and disabled people are also allowed out for a short walk near home. No more than one other adult may accompany them.

Nothing changes when it comes to adults going for a run, jog or walk alone. This is allowed, as these all count as forms of exercise, as long as people stay “near home”. Though exactly how near may depend on regional rules, with some local authorities requiring people stay within 200 metres of their homes.

READ ALSO: 

“The motor activities allowed should not be understood as equivalent to sports (jogging)”, the text stated.

People are allowed to walk or run “in the vicinity of their homes” but are still “forbidden to carry out recreational activities outdoors, and access parks, villas, play areas and public gardens,”

This exercise, according to the circular, is allowed for “reasons of necessity or health”.

Anyone going outside for these reasons must still complete a self-certification form and take it with them.

Photo: AFP

The new guidance sparked criticism from some regional authorities who said it gave the wrong message to the public at a crucial moment.

“This is not the time to let your guard down. The circular issued by the Ministry of the Interior risks creating a devastating psychological effect by frustrating the efforts and sacrifices made so far,” Lombardy's Regional Councilor for Welfare, Giulio Gallera, told La Repubblica.

It “could be taken as a signal of easing of the containment measures,” he contiued. “Strict, important measures which have allowed us to contain the curve of the coronavirus contagions.”

“The light at the end of the tunnel is likely to go out completely when ambiguous messages are given: the useful indication for everyone must be to stay at home for a few more weeks. Only in this way will we be able to defeat this sneaky and invisible enemy. “

In response, the Interior Ministry stressed that the rules had not been relaxed but these were “only interpretative details of the current regulatory framework.”

“You can leave your home only in the cases already provided for by the emergency decrees: for work, for reasons of absolute urgency or necessity, and for health reasons “.

Some regions are on Wednesday continuing to follow different rules, despite the national government's guidance. Everyone living in Italy is advised to check their regional authority's website to find out what is and isn't allowed where they are.

Last week the government upped the maximum fine for breaking quarantine rules from €206 to €3,000 euros. Penalties are even higher in some regions under local rules.

READ ALSO: How lockdowns and restrictions across different European countries may have saved lives

Member comments

  1. Anyone know the latest about walking outside in Sicily. A friend said it was okay as from Sunday morning to go walking. Wehave already been fined e280 for walking in the hills so we have to get it right this time. Thanks (and lets hope it will be over soon!)

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TRAVEL NEWS

Covid face mask rule on flights in Europe set to be eased

The mandatory EU-wide mask requirement for air travel is set to be dropped from Monday, May 16th, but airlines may still require passengers to wear masks on some or all flights

Covid face mask rule on flights in Europe set to be eased

Europe-wide facemask rules on flights are set to be ditched as early as next week in light of new recommendations from health and air safety experts.

The European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) dropped recommendations for mandatory mask-wearing in airports and during flights in updated Covid-19 safety measures for travel issued on Wednesday, May 11th.

The new rules are expected to be rolled out from Monday, May 16th, but airlines may still continue to require the wearing of masks on some or all of flights. And the updated health safety measures still say that wearing a face mask remains one of the best ways to protect against the transmission of the virus.

The joint EASA/ECDC statement reminded travellers that masks may still be required on flights to destinations in certain countries that still require the wearing of masks on public transport and in transport hubs.

It also recommends that vulnerable passengers should continue to wear a face mask regardless of the rules, ideally an FFP2/N95/KN95 type mask which offers a higher level of protection than a standard surgical mask.

“From next week, face masks will no longer need to be mandatory in air travel in all cases, broadly aligning with the changing requirements of national authorities across Europe for public transport,” EASA executive director Patrick Ky said in the statement. 

“For passengers and air crews, this is a big step forward in the normalisation of air travel. Passengers should however behave responsibly and respect the choices of others around them. And a passenger who is coughing and sneezing should strongly consider wearing a face mask, for the reassurance of those seated nearby.”  

ECDC director Andrea Ammon added: “The development and continuous updates to the Aviation Health Safety Protocol in light of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic have given travellers and aviation personnel better knowledge of the risks of transmission of SARS-CoV-2 and its variants. 

“While risks do remain, we have seen that non-pharmaceutical interventions and vaccines have allowed our lives to begin to return to normal. 

“While mandatory mask-wearing in all situations is no longer recommended, it is important to be mindful that together with physical distancing and good hand hygiene it is one of the best methods of reducing transmission. 

“The rules and requirements of departure and destination states should be respected and applied consistently, and travel operators should take care to inform passengers of any required measures in a timely manner.”

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