Beach businesses warn that many are unable to open

in News · 17-05-2020 10:00:00 · 0 Comments

Beach businesses warn that the conditions imposed for the reopening of beaches, due to the covid-19, will prevent many from opening and will increase unemployment in the sector, in a year when there is also a shortage of lifeguards.

The Government announced on Friday the measures to be adopted on the beaches during the bathing season, within the scope of the deconfinition plan, which include, among other measures, the limitation of the capacity of bars and restaurants to 50%, as well as a possible reorganization from the terraces to ensure the safety distance.

The physical distance between users must be 1.5 meters and between parasols, awnings or stems of 3 meters.

João Carreira, president of the Portuguese Federation of Beach Concessionaires, says that "there are a number of concessionaires that will not be able to open, even in the north", but ensures that they will comply with the rules issued.

This is the main concern of the representative of the concessionaires, since as far as the minimum mandatory distances are concerned, he believes that “things will go well”, because “the users themselves already have this notion”.

The official recognizes that it is an “atypical year” and ensures that the “concessionaires are on the ground they want to help”, but he calls for help from all the competent entities.

"There are areas of the country that are going to have problems, because there are dealers with minimal support that will not open".

Some worked mainly with excursions, school groups or summer camps, which this year will not be able to happen, others are faced with the possibility of seeing their space reduced to two or three tables, due to the space occupation being reduced to 50%, "which is not feasible for its operation because the expenses are huge".

In addition, there are all those who, due to old age or health weaknesses, are afraid and have already made it known that they will not open.

"This will also be reflected in employment, we will give jobs to far fewer people on the coast," he warned.

Another problem pointed out by João Carreira is the lack of lifeguards, and the president of the concessionaire federation is counting on the help of municipalities, the Portuguese Environment Agency and the Aid Institute for Shipwrecks to “resolve this situation of safety in beaches ”.

The situation "is not very pleasant, because there were many lifeguards from Brazil, and from other countries, Argentines as well, who came to help with the quantitative of the integrated plans, something that did not happen this year" due to Covid-19.

“What we suggest is that it is the municipalities that hire lifeguards. We set up all the first aid beach posts and were part of the solution, but the responsibility for hiring lifeguards, as far as we are concerned, should, given that it is an atypical year, pass through municipalities and maritime authorities ”, he added.

Portugal today registers 1,203 deaths related to covid-19, 13 more than on Friday, and 28,810 infected, 227 more, according to the epidemiological bulletin released today by the General Directorate of Health.

Portugal entered on May 3 in a calamity situation due to the pandemic, after three consecutive periods in a state of emergency since March 19.

This new phase of combating covid-19 provides for mandatory confinement for sick people and under active surveillance, the general duty of home collection and the mandatory use of masks or visors in public transport, public attendance services, schools and commercial establishments.

The Government approved on Friday new measures that come into force on Monday, including the resumption of visits to users of nursing homes, the reopening of daycare centers, face-to-face classes for the 11th and 12th years and the reopening of some street shops, cafes, restaurants, museums, monuments and palaces. The return of community religious ceremonies is scheduled for May 30 and the beaches will open for June 6.


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