Coronavirus in Saudi Arabia: Riyadh sets 13 rules to reopen malls on April 29

A Saudi woman shops at a mall with her children in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. (File photo: Reuters)

Riyadh municipality announced 13 requirements to restore commercial activity in malls starting next Wednesday April 29, in accordance with the government’s coronavirus precautionary measures.

The requirements include: the continued closure of all entertainment and playing areas inside malls, and not allowing the entry of children under the age of 15.

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The municipality requires all malls to ensure the availability of medical examination and sterilization teams to measure the temperature of all individuals entering the mall at all entrances throughout opening hours, prevent any person with a temperature exceeding 38 degrees Celsius from entering, remove all chairs and benches in the corridors, and provide masks and gloves for visitors at the entrances.

All malls are to have security personnel stationed at all entrances to ensure that visitors are wearing masks.

The municipality also requires all malls to sterilize the entire facility every 24 hours, allocate rooms for medical isolation when there is any suspicion of an individual being infected with COVID-19, ensure the presence of a sufficient number of security personnel, and carry out regular rounds to verify full compliance, and suspend the valet service.

It also called for malls to put up explanatory signs of the guidelines to ensure that everyone understands the precautionary measures.

Malls should rely on the use of escalators and stairs for movement between floors, and in the event they are not available, only two people are allowed to ride the elevator at a time.

Revised curfew

Saudi Arabia had revised on April 21 its coronavirus curfew timings for the holy month of Ramadan, allowing residents in all areas and cities not currently under a 24-horu lockdown to go out between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m.

However, areas under a complete lockdown will only be allowed to go out for essential needs, such as grocery shopping or medical visits, between the hours of 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Residents in these areas must stay within their neighborhoods

A 24-hour lockdown was previously imposed on the cities of Riyadh, Tabuk, Dammam, Dhahran, and Hofuf and throughout the governorates of Jeddah, Taif, Qatif, and Khobar.

The government had imposed a full lockdown on the holy cities of Mecca and Medina as well. Other cities and governorates had a curfew implemented from 3 p.m. to 6 a.m. daily.

There are 17,522 confirmed coronavirus cases, 2,357 recovered patients and 139 fatalities in Saudi Arabia as of Sunday, according to the Ministry of Health.

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:58 - GMT 06:58
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