QCOSTARICA – The increase in covid-19 cases and hospital saturation forced authorities to reinstate the sanitary vehicle restriction starting at 9 pm starting, Saturday, September 18, and for the rest of the month.
Likewise, the alternating of odd and even plates restricted will return on weekends, in order to reduce mobility.
This supposes a tightening of the current restrictions when the sanitary vehicle restriction is extended by one hour, which from Saturday will be between 9 pm to 5 am, affecting retailers, supermarkets, grocery stores, restaurants and many others.
The capacity of bars will remain at 25% and academic, cult or cultural activities will continue at only 500 people maximum, provided that the distance of 1.8 meters between individuals or bubbles is ensured.
The vehicle restrictions during the week the circulation by plates is as follows:
- Mondays, vehicles with plates ending in 1 & 2 cannot circulate
- Tuesdays, vehicles with plates ending in 3 & 4 cannot circulate
- Wednesdays, vehicles with plates ending in 5 & 6 cannot circulate
- Thursdays, vehicles with plates ending in 7 & 8 cannot circulate
- Fridays, vehicles with plates ending in 9 & 0 cannot circulate
For the weekends:
- Saturday, September 18, vehicles with ODD ending plates cannot circulate
- Sunday, September 19, vehicles with EVEN ending plates cannot circulate
- Saturday, September 25, vehicles with ODD ending plates cannot circulate
- Sunday, September 26, vehicles with EVEN ending plates cannot circulate
The return of more restrictive measures caused discomfort in the business and commercial sector from where complaints came to the Government by insisting that companies comply with the protocols and that reducing their period of operation will not remove the country from the emergency.
The Costa Rican Union of Chambers and Associations of the Private Business Sector (Uccaep) expressed its displeasure at what it called the “little interest expressed by the Executive Power to accept the collaboration that the business sector has tended” to contribute to addressing the pandemic.
According to the organization, the Government has not wanted to listen to their requests nor has it explained the technical criteria necessary to make decisions that promote the reactivation of the economy, the reduction of employment and combat increasing poverty.
“The business leadership considers that the decision to return to the sanitary restriction at 9 pm and for odd or even plates on weekends is another hard blow to a sector that has contributed to the strict adherence to the protocols. Furthermore, it does nothing to prevent the loss of more jobs in the formal private sector,” the group said in a statement.
The Uccaep reiterated that schedule limitations “are not the way to reduce contagion, the way is to speed up vaccination” while reiterating the convenience of teleworking in the public and private sectors.
For Arturo Rosabal, vice president of the Chamber of Commerce, the changes are a “step backward”.