Social distancing measures tightened

November 14, 2020

(To watch the full press briefing with sign language interpretation, click here.)


The Government today announced that social distancing measures will be tightened due to the development of COVID-19 in Hong Kong.


Recently, there have been signs of a rebound in local confirmed cases with unknown sources of infection, the Government said in a statement, adding that the fourth wave of the outbreak could be triggered at any moment.


In view of the latest public health risk assessment, in particular the higher risks brought about by staycations as shown in recent cases, the Government considers it necessary to tighten the measures under the Prevention & Control of Disease (Requirements & Directions) (Business & Premises) Regulation.


The tightening of measures, which target mask-off gathering activities, include requiring catering businesses to stop selling food or drinks for consumption on their premises from midnight to 4.59am daily.


A maximum of two people will be allowed to sit together at one table at bars or pubs as well as clubs or nightclubs, while four people can be seated at a table at other catering business premises.


The measures require people to wear masks when exercising in indoor sports premises and public skating rinks, except when there is a distance of at least 1.5m or an effective partition, or when doing exercises involving little physical contact.


The Government will also explore incorporating hotels and guesthouses into the list of scheduled premises.


Requirements will be imposed on the newly added scheduled premises, including limiting the number of guests in each guestroom to four people and requiring guests to register their details with hotel operators.


Guestrooms for hotel confinees undergoing quarantine and non-confinees must be separated by having them located on different floors, and hotel operators must take effective measures to prevent hotel confinees from leaving their rooms.


The measures will take effect from November 16 for 11 days.


Additionally, visiting arrangements for people under quarantine in hotels will be tightened.


Starting November 18, the Department of Health will disallow visitors for people under compulsory quarantine in hotels.


The prohibition on group gatherings of more than four people in public places and the mandatory mask-wearing requirement will continue during the 11 days until November 26.


The Government added it will review the various measures in place according to the development of the epidemic situation.

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