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Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Hope on the horizon as Yucatán lifts more COVID-19 restrictions

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Carlos Rosado van der Gracht
Born in Mérida, Carlos Rosado van der Gracht is a Mexican/Canadian blogger, photographer and adventure expedition leader. He holds degrees in multimedia, philosophy and translation from universities in Mexico, Canada and Norway. Sign up for the Yucatán Roundup, a free newsletter, which delivers the week's top headlines every Monday.
Gov. Mauricio Vila Dosal announced yesterday an end to Yucatán’s motor vehicle curfew and several other COVID-19 restrictions. Photo: Courtesy

Over a year after they were first introduced, mobility restrictions in Yucatán have now been completely rescinded.

This means that motorists will now be free to transit city streets and highways 24 hours a day, every day of the week. 

“The trend that we are seeing is very positive, this allows us to lift several existing restrictions and get our economy going again,” said Yucatán Gov. Mauricio Vila Dosal.

The news comes two weeks after Yucatán achieved yellow on Mexico’s epidemiological traffic light system

Given a drop in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations, the state government has also softened many other restrictions. Public hospitals were caring for 143 coronavirus patients on Monday. Another 476 were quarantined at home.

All businesses that are currently allowed to operate will no longer be forced to close early, except for restaurants which will continue to close by 11 pm.

Religious services will be allowed to operate at 70% capacity while sporting events will be capped at 40%.

Roadblocks preventing town-to-town travel began in March 2020, and by July a nightly curfew was formalized.

Earlier: Yucatán No. 1 in COVID deaths among indigenous people

Gov. Vila Dosal warned that if COVID-19 cases begin to rise, the state government will be forced to reinstate several restrictions. 

The decision to soften COVID-19 restrictions comes less than a month before Mexico’s midterm elections on June 6. That triggered speculation that the decision was politically motivated.

Given the governor’s approach so far, it is unlikely that the remaining restrictions will be lifted until Yucatán achieves green on Mexico’s epidemiological traffic light system.

As of yesterday, 14 Mexican states are already green, while another 15 are yellow and three remain under orange alert. No jurisdiction in the country has been labeled red in over a month.

Mexico’s epidemiological traffic light system as of May 11, 2021. Photo: Courtesy

Vaccination efforts in Yucatán have progressed well, though slower than first anticipated.

Yucatán residents 50 and over, as well as educators, will be offered their first dose of COVID-19 vaccines sometime in May. 

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