• May 22, 2024

Spain Restricts Smoking in Pandemic Fight

 Spain Restricts Smoking in Pandemic Fight
Photo: javier alamo from Pixabay

Facing a new wave of Covid-19 infections, Spanish authorities have prohibited smoking outdoors in cases where social distancing cannot be guaranteed.
 
The new standards would allow people to continue smoking outdoors if they can maintain two meters of distance between people. “The best thing is never to smoke neither in the public space nor at home,” said Health Minister Salvador Illa.
 
Earlier last week, Galicia and the Canary Islands already imposed coronavirus-related curbs on smoking after experts recommended the measure to the regional government.
 
The move is supported by health ministry research outlining the link between smoking and the increased spread of coronavirus. It said the risk was heightened because people project droplets—and potentially Covid-19—when they exhale smoke.
 
It also said smokers risked infection in other ways, such as by touching their cigarettes before bringing them to their mouths and by handling face masks when taking them on and off.
 
Spain faces the worst infection rate in western Europe. Daily cases have risen from fewer than 150 in June to more than 1,500 throughout August. It recorded 1,690 new cases in the latest daily count on Wednesday, bringing the country’s total to almost 330,000.