Pubs and Nightclubs in Capital Area Closed this Weekend

Vala Hafstað

Pubs and nightclubs in Reykjavík  and vicinity will be closed for four days, September 18 through 21, in an effort to contain a new wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in Iceland, mbl.is reports. The ban applies to Reykjavík,  Mosfellsbær, Hafnarfjörður, Garðabær, Kópavogur, Kjósarhreppur and Seltjarnarnes.

A regulation amendment to this effect has been posted on the government’s website

This essentially means that Minister of Health Svandís Svavarsdóttir has approved a recommendation made yesterday by Chief Epidemiologist Þórólfur Guðnason.

In his memo to the minister yesterday, he writes:

“During the past three days, 38 individuals have been diagnosed in this country with COVID-19, representing a substantial increase from previous days. Almost all these individuals are located in the capital area, and tracing of the transmissions reveals that at least a quarter of them visited certain pubs and night clubs in Reykjavík less than a week ago. These individuals have likely infected others following their visits.

“In my assessment, a large cluster of infections could be brewing, originating in visits to pubs and night clubs in the capital area.

“Therefore,  I find it essential to react as quickly as possible with targeted measures in order to prevent a widespread epidemic and its consequences.”

The ban does not apply to restaurants and cafés.

The Department of Civil Protection and Emergency Management has revealed the name of the pub in Reykjavík, where a large number of people are believe to have been exposed to COVID-19. The pub is The Irishman Pub at Klapparstígur 27. Anyone who visited the pub between the hours of 4 pm and 11 pm Friday, September 11, is asked to be tested for the coronavirus. Call your local health clinic to schedule an appointment.

The department notes that disease prevention measures were not lacking at the pub. Where many people gather, the risk of infection is high.

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