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La Fortuna and two cantons under orange alert due to coronavirus spread

The Health Ministry and the National Emergency Commission (CNE) on Sunday announced an orange alert for one district and two cantons in northern Costa Rica in response to the coronavirus.

The orange alert announced Sunday applies to the following locations:

  • The district of La Fortuna in the canton of San Carlos.
  • The entire canton of Pococí.
  • The entire canton of Upala.

Those cantons and region join several others with stricter health measures in an effort to contain wider spread of the coronavirus throughout Costa Rica.

The following restrictions apply for two weeks starting Monday, June 8:

  • Businesses that are open to the public can only operate Monday to Friday from 5 am. to 5 p.m.
  • On weekends, only supermarkets, grocery stores, pharmacies, and health services may operate.
  • A weeknight vehicle restriction forbids most driving from 5 p.m. to 5 a.m.

Transit on all sectors of Route 1 (General Cañas Highway), Route 142 (Cañas – Tilarán – La Fortuna) and Route 6 (Cañas – Upala) will remain subject to the more lenient nationwide restrictions rather than the stricter regional ones.

Thirty-nine of Sunday’s 55 new coronavirus cases are located in the cantons of San Carlos, Pococí and Upala.

In addition to the cantons and districts under an orange alert, other Northern Zone areas are under expanded nighttime vehicular restrictions (5 p.m. to 5 a.m.) as shown in pink below:

CNE map showing areas with enhanced restrictions as of June 7, 2020
Via CNE.

Costa Rica has otherwise moved to reopen important economic drivers, such as national parks, hotels and beaches, though it’s enforcing border restrictions until at least July.

List of regions under special restrictions

Below is a list of cantons and districts with extended weeknight driving restrictions (5 p.m. to 5 a.m.):

  1. Guatuso.
  2. Guácimo, specifically the district of Duacarí.
  3. La Cruz.
  4. Los Chiles.
  5. Pococí.
  6. Río Cuarto.
  7. San Carlos, specifically the districts of La Fortuna, Venecia, Aguas Zarcas, Cutris, Pital and Pocosol.
  8. Sarapiquí, specifically the districts of Llanuras del Gaspar and Curuña.
  9. Siquirres, specifically the districts of Pacuarito and Reventazón.
  10. Upala
  11. San Ramón, specifically the district of Peñas Blancas
  12. Abangares, specifically the district of de Las Juntas.
  13. Cañas, specifically the districts of Cañas and Bebedero.

Below is a list of districts under an orange alert, meaning they have expanded weeknight driving restrictions (5 p.m. to 5 a.m.) plus restrictions on commercial businesses:

  1. Pococí.
  2. Peñas Blancas (San Ramón).
  3. Cañas and Bebedero (Cañas)
  4. Las Juntas (Abangares).
  5. Los Chiles (Los Chiles).
  6. La Fortuna (San Carlos).
  7. Upala.

Note that the below roads are exempt from the extended driving restrictions; the more lenient national rules apply instead:

  1. Route 1 (Interamericana Norte)
  2. Route 6 (Cañas-Upala)
  3. Route 142 (Cañas-Tilarán-La Fortuna)
  4. Route 702 (San Ramón-La Fortuna)
  5. Route 18 (Abangares-Nicoya)
  6. Route 32 (Braulio Carrillo Highway)

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