Puerto Rico’s governor announced an islandwide curfew and early evening closings of non-essential businesses in an effort to contain the coronavirus spread.
On Sunday in a televised press conference, Gov. Wanda Vázquez announced a curfew from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. as well as the 6 p.m. closing of retailers and commercial establishments, with the exception of supermarkets, drug stores, banking centers and gas stations. The early closings will be effective until March 30th.
“Amid the possibility of the virus’s transmission and propagation even among people who present no symptoms, we have to take all the precautions so we don’t become potential transmitters of the disease,” said the governor.
The island has five confirmed coronavirus cases, including an Italian couple who were visiting the island on a cruise; the woman, who is ill, is 68 and her husband, who was found to be also infected, is 70. The third patient is an 87-year-old California man who fell ill after stopping in the island on another ship; the island is a popular cruise ship destination.
The fourth patient is a local man, 71, who is also a cancer patient, and a 65-year-old woman became the fifth patient confirmed on Sunday.
Puerto Rico has at least another 17 suspected cases.
The governor had previously announced public schools would close for two weeks and no cruise ships would be docking in the island.