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Life in Level 3: What will happen under new restrictions in Dublin?


The National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET) will meet on Thursday to decide its advice to the Government on restrictions for Dublin to limit the spread of coronavirus.

Ministers and senior officials expect that a significant tightening of restrictions in the capital will be recommended, with Dublin likely to move at midnight on Friday from Level 2 to Level 3 on the Government’s five-level structure for managing the pandemic that was unveiled on Tuesday.

Here, we take a look at what Level 3 would entail for the county:

Can I travel outside Dublin?

People should not leave the county unless for work, education or other essential purposes.

Am I allowed to have social or family gatherings?

You are allowed visitors from one other household only in your home or garden. No social or family gatherings should take place in other settings.

What about weddings?

Up to 25 people can attend a wedding ceremony and reception.

What happens to Mass and funerals?

Religious services move online in Level 3, while places of worship remain open for private prayer. Up to 25 mourners can attend funerals.

Can organised gatherings such as conferences or events in theatres/cinemas take place?

No organised indoor gatherings should take place. However, organised outdoor gatherings of up to 15 people can take place.

Museums, galleries and other cultural attractions all close under Level 3 while libraries will be available for e-services and call and collect. Outdoor playgrounds, play areas and parks will remain open.

What about sport?

Outdoor non-contact training is allowed only in pods of up to 15 people with an exemption for professional/elite/inter-county sports/senior club championship.

In terms of indoor training, only individual training can take place. No exercise or dance classes can happen indoors.

Can matches happen outside?

No matches or events are allowed to take place. There is an exemption again for professional/elite/inter-county/club championship/horse racing which can take place behind closed doors.

Will gyms have to close now?

Gyms, leisure centres and swimming pools can remain open provided they have the necessary protective measures and for individual training only.

Are pubs and restaurants going to have to close?

The Government has already said that the capital’s wet pubs will not open with those in the rest of the country on September 21st.

Generally, under Level 3 measures, wet pubs can remain open with additional restrictions. Bars, cafes and restaurants must implement additional restrictions for indoor dining. The Department of the Taoiseach have not yet set out what these additional restrictions will be.

What about hotels and similar accommodation?

They can remain open but services are to be limited to residents.

Is the advice to still work from home?

Yes, under Level 3 the Government’s advice is to “work from home unless absolutely necessary to attend in person”.

Will schools and creches remain open?

Schools and creches remain open under Level 3 with protective measures in place. Further, higher and adult education are to “escalate all appropriate protective measures and limit congregation as far as possible”.

Do over-70s or medically vulnerable people have to cocoon?

Those aged 70 years and over and the medically vulnerable are advised to “exercise judgement” regarding the extent to which they engage with others and in activities outside the home.

Can I visit a relative in a nursing home?

Visits to long-term residential care facilities are suspended under Level 3 aside from “critical and compassionate circumstances”.

And what about public transport?

Face coverings must continue to be worn on public transport. People are advised to walk or cycle where possible. Public transport capacity will be limited to 50 per cent.

Where does this leave retail and hairdressers/barbers?

Again, face coverings must continue to be worn when entering retail outlets, shopping centres etc. They along with hairdressers, barbers and beauticians can remain open as long as the necessary protective measures are in place.

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