The Ministry of Health recommends extreme measures of social distancing and hygiene on the beaches

In continental waters, such as pools, backwaters and freshwater channels with low flow, bathing and recreational uses are not recommended for this 2020 season.

The Ministry of Health has published a document with recommendations for opening beaches and bathing areas to the public. On the beaches, the risks associated with COVID 19 are related to the interaction between people.

The document, available on the website of the Ministry of Health, remember that there is no scientific information on the ability of the virus to remain infectious in salt water; in addition, salt has been identified as an effective biocidal agent. In the case of sand, the joint action of salt in seawater, solar ultraviolet radiation (UVB) and the high temperature that can reach it are favorable for the deactivation of pathogens.

For all these reasons, the document insists on the need for collective awareness regarding respect for social distancing. Thus, it is advisable to limit the capacity of the maritime bathing areas where a large influx of people is expected. Access to the bathing areas will be carried out respecting the social distancing measures, which must be remembered through posters, as well as hygiene regulations.

In addition, attention should be paid to the distance between sun loungers, umbrellas and other elements. For indicative purposes, the shafts of the umbrellas will not be installed at distances less than 4 meters. The beach manager may sector the beach to ensure social distancing.

For their part, people who take walks on the shore will respect at least two meters of social distance.

Nor is it recommended to carry out collective sports or gatherings of more than 15 people or members of the same family or who do not live together at the same address and the use of all kinds of beach infrastructure (playgrounds and sports facilities).

Cleaning and disinfection

In order to prevent the transmission of the virus, users and workers must, in addition to complying with social distance measures, comply with hygiene regulations and apply technical criteria for maintenance, cleaning and disinfection.

Daily cleaning of the sand in the bathing area is recommended, with special emphasis on the removal of organic and inorganic residues. Disinfection of beach sand is not recommended.

Furthermore, daily cleaning and disinfection of beach furniture (showers, footbaths, litter bins), surfaces, common areas and transit areas such as wooden walkways is recommended to avoid the spread of the virus.

Beach bars should follow the protocols established for hospitality establishments. Enclosed spaces such as Red Cross lifeguards, locker rooms and services should also be ventilated, cleaned and disinfected. For its part, in sports facilities and game parks, cleaning and disinfection will be guaranteed prior to the opening of the beach; not being able to use these facilities until the bathing area is opened.

Each beach must have a protocol for cleaning and disinfecting the furniture that can be used by bathers, so that the steps to be followed by the operators are indicated. Also, each city council will elaborate or update the protocol with all the measures in the matter of prevention of labor risks, according to the procedure of action for the services of prevention of labor risks.

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