Come Monday, July 20 Bermuda’s COVID-19 as we know it will finally be lifted to be reviewed moving forward on a weekly basis.
This from the head of the sub-committee responsible for reopening the island’s economy, Lieutenant Colonel David Burch, the Minister of Public Works.
Speaking at the COVID-19 briefing on Thursday that the curfew would be lifted on the condition that liquor licenced premises close at midnight.
Moving forward he said the term “exceptional circumstances” would be dropped from applications to the Minister of National Security for permission of gatherings of more than 50 people, adding that the condition had been “confusing” for the public.
The change is expected to take effect by Tuesday.
“It is vitally important that in considering our actions going forward that we all must be cognizant and careful to make decisions that do not put our families and fellow citizens at risk regarding the coronavirus,” said Minister Burch.
“Make no mistake that if we act badly then there will be no hesitation in recommending to the Cabinet that we return to an earlier phase to protect our country.”
Clarification on the wearing of masks:
Masks must be worn indoors. Masks must be worn outdoors if physical distancing cannot be maintained.
Clearly there is a need to apply common sense – if one is driving in a car alone or with members of their household, riding a bike, walking alone – it is not necessary to wear a mask.
Simply put – if you are in close proximity to anyone outside your family – then a mask is required. Many stores and businesses – like government buildings – now require a mask to enter their facility.
With regard to activities over Cup Match – overnight camping in Parks and on Islands will be allowed following the removal of curfew as well as over the Cup Match weekend.
All of the camp sites are being inspected over the next few days and applications for camping permits will be accepted from Monday, July 20th.
Specifically, for Cup Match campers and picnickers will be allowed to erect camping and picnicking equipment and property on Tuesday, 28th July however camping is ONLY permitted from Wednesday 29th July until Monday 3rd August 2020 as per the Public Health (COVID-19 Emergency Powers) Amendment Regulations 2020.
Gates will be opened on Tuesday, July 28th, 2020 so patrons will have the opportunity to get their equipment and property into the parks and beaches until 9:30pm on Wednesday, July 29th, 2020 after which time Park Ranger staff on duty will be locking the gates.
All equipment and property must be removed by Tuesday, August 4th, 2020 or it will be deemed abandoned and disposed of.
Maintenance staff will be collecting trash and cleaning bathrooms during the Cup Match Holiday and weekend.
Park Ranger staff will patrol the parks and beaches, enforcing the Park Regulations and addressing any other incidents in conjunction with the Bermuda Police Service and the Royal Bermuda Regiment.
Staff will be assigned to control traffic flow and parking at the following locations:
- Horseshoe Bay
- Warwick Long Bay West
- Elbow Beach Tribe Road 4B
- Clearwater Beach Park and Coopers Island Park & Nature Reserve.
Horseshoe Bay, due to the popularity on Emancipation Day Thursday 30th July 2020 will be managed as follows:
- Department of Parks staff in conjunction with officers of the Bermuda Police Service, Royal Bermuda Regiment and St. Johns Ambulance will be on duty.
- Traffic flow and parking will be controlled and once the parking lot is full access will be for dropping off only until spaces open up.
- There may be times when the parking lot is closed to all traffic in order to clear any congestion.
- Patrons are advised that the closure of Horseshoe Bay will be at 8:00 pm when patrons must start clearing the beach in order for the cleaning to begin for the use on Mary Prince Day Friday 31st July 2020.
Park and beach users are reminded not to park on double yellow lines or block the gates as they must remain clear at all times for access by Department of Parks maintenance & patrol vehicles, as well as emergency vehicles from the Bermuda Police Service, Royal Bermuda Regiment, Bermuda Fire & Rescue Services, EMH and St John Ambulance.
For safety the following will not be permitted:
- No Bonfires especially within Coopers Island Nature Reserve
- No excessively loud music playing
- No Dogs on the beaches
- No Horses on the beaches
- No vehicles inside the parks after the gates are closed
- Clean up your trash – leave the areas as you find them.
Vehicular traffic to Coney Island Park is restricted due to the structural integrity of the Bailey bridge and patrons must walk in.
The cooperation of the patrons using the parks and beaches over the holiday period is appreciated.
All of these measures are being relaxed because of our good behavior and following of the rules. We are still in a pandemic but we also recognize that we must gradually relax the rules.
It is vitally important that in considering our actions going forward that we all must be cognizant and careful to make decisions that do not put our families and fellow citizens at risk regarding the coronavirus. Make no mistake that if we act badly then there will be no hesitation in recommending to the Cabinet that we return to an earlier phase to protect our country.
I expect we will be as responsible as we have been which has gotten us to our current state of general compliance.
Camping in parks and on beaches will be allowed for the Cup Match holiday from July 29 to August 3.
Park gates will be opened on July 28 to allow the public to set up camping equipment.
But bonfires and “excessively loud music” will not be allowed.
No dogs or horses will permitted on beaches and no vehicles will be allowed into parks after the gates are closed.
Colonel Burch said: “If we act badly, there will be no hesitation in recommending to Cabinet that we return to an earlier phase to protect our country.”
- Top Feature Photo Courtesy of TNN