Covid 19 coronavirus Delta outbreak: Alert level 3 – rules around gatherings and face masks

The last time New Zealand was in alert level 3 was more than a year ago, with the loosening of restrictions looming, do you know what the shift will mean?

From 11.59pm on Tuesday everywhere apart from Auckland and Northland will move to alert level 3.

The changes will not be drastic but the biggest ones revolve around the partial re-opening of stores and restaraunts for contactless pick-up, delivery or drive-through.

What else will alert level 3 change? Here are the rules:

Face coverings

You legally must wear a face covering:

• On public transport.
• On domestic flights.
• If you are a taxi or ride-share driver.

You’re strongly encouraged to wear a face-covering when you are outside your home and in a place where it is hard to keep your distance from other people.

Travel and personal movement

You legally must stay within your household bubble whenever you are not at work or school. You can expand this to:

• Connect with close family and whānau.
• Bring in caregivers, or support isolated people.

The Government advises you should only include people in your bubble where it will keep you and them safe and healthy. If anyone within your bubble feels unwell, they must immediately self-isolate from everyone else within the bubble.

You can travel locally but regional travel restricted

You can travel within your local area, for example going to work or school, shopping, or getting exercise.

Your local area means the area near your home that you regularly visit for essential services. What is considered local will differ depending on where you live. City dwellers may have a supermarket or dairy close by. If you live rurally, you may need to take a drive to reach these.

If there is an alert level 3 boundary, the Government will publish information on the Covid-19 website about which travel is permitted.

Exercise, sport and recreation

The Government is warning alert level 3 is not the time to take up new activities. You can do low-risk recreation activities in your local area.

Go to your local park or beach, not your favourite one. You cannot stay overnight at your bach or holiday home.

If you are experienced you can do more activities under level 3. These include:

• Surfing — if you are an experienced surfer, you can go to your local break.
• Tramping — day walks on easy trails are allowed. Remember to keep your distance from other people. DOC huts and campsites are closed.
• Mountain biking — allowed on easy trails if you are experienced and know the trail.
• Swimming — in safe local spots.
• Horse riding — if you are an experienced rider and it is low risk. Stay as close to home as you can.

Stay within 200 metres from shore if you are kayaking, canoeing, rowing, surfing, wind surfing or paddle boarding.

Physical distancing

Keep your distance when outside your home:

• Two metres in public and retail stores, like supermarkets
• One metre in controlled environments, like workplaces and schools.

Public transport can continue to operate with strict health and safety requirements.

Gatherings and events

Gatherings of up to 10 people can go ahead, but only for:

• Wedding and civil union ceremonies.
• Funerals and tangihanga.

Physical distancing and public health measures legally must be maintained.

Takeaways and shopping

Cafes, restaurants and takeaways can open but only for contactless pick-up, delivery or drive through. You cannot go in to dine.

Food delivery services, such as Delivereasy and Uber Eats, can also operate.

McDonald’s has said it will revert to Drive-Thru and McDelivery only and any restaurant located in a mall will be closed in line with Level 3 mall closures.

Stores such as Mitre 10, The Warehouse and Bunnings will remain closed but many can still offer contactless click and collect or delivery.

Public venues

Public venues legally must close at alert level 3.

This includes libraries, museums, cinemas, food courts, gyms, pools, playgrounds and markets.

Workplaces and businesses

If your business requires close physical contact it cannot operate and it is recommended staff work from home if they can.

Businesses need to display a QR code and have an alternative contact tracing system. Customers cannot come onto the premises — unless it is a supermarket, dairy, butcher, fishmonger, greengrocer, petrol station, pharmacy or permitted health service.

The business must be contactless. Customers can pay online, over the phone or in a contactless way. Delivery or pick-up must also be contactless.

Staff must remain a minimum of 1 metre apart at all times where practical. Other measures, such as personal protective equipment (PPE) including face coverings, are recommended to be used where appropriate.

Education

Children and young people should learn from home at alert level 3.

Any child who does not have supervision at home from an appropriate person can attend their service or school.

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