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Costa Rica extends orange alert in La Fortuna, Upala; reduces alert level elsewhere

June 16, 2020

The Health Ministry and the National Emergency Commission (CNE) on Tuesday announced an extension of the orange alert for several locations, mostly in northern Costa Rica.

The following districts remain under an orange alert until June 24:

  • The district of Peñas Blancas in San Ramón.
  • The district of Los Chiles in the canton of Los Chiles.
  • The district of La Fortuna in the canton of San Carlos.
  • The district of Paquera in the canton of Puntarenas.
  • All districts in the canton of Upala.
  • All districts in the canton of Pococí.

Enhanced health restrictions apply in the aforementioned districts as follows:

  • Commercial businesses may 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.

The measures extend in those districts what many in the tourism sector call the “Zero Season” due to the lack of visitors — both foreign and domestic. For areas under an orange alert, hotels largely cannot operate unless they are housing foreign tourists who are already in Costa Rica.

The following districts which were previously under an orange alert have been upgraded to a yellow alert:

  • The districts of Cañas and Bebedero in the canton of Cañas.
  • The district of Las Juntas in the canton of Abangares.

“CNE and Health Ministry recommend that the general population reinforce prevention measures in terms of hand-washing, sneezing and coughing protocols,” the organizations said Tuesday in a statement.

Costa Rica has 990 known active coronavirus cases through Tuesday. It is expected to further ease coronavirus measures — except for locations under an orange alert — on June 20.

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