06/03/2020 - 14:00
"The country lives again!" the minister Francisco Boccia almost shouted euphorically, on the day of the end of the quarantine that lasted almost three months. Italy opened the internal borders between the regions and the external borders with other European countries, except Austria, which does not allow Italians to enter for fear of the risk of contagion. Hundreds of thousands of nationals were set in motion across the country in cars, trains, ships, and planes as Phase 3 began, to be completed between the 15th and 20th of this month with the opening of cinemas, theaters, and the resumption of championships. of football .
Piazza del Duomo in Milan, this Wednesday. / AFP
The main objective of the reopening is to save, at least in part, the tourist season and begin to repair the very serious damage that is being suffered by an industry that supplies 13% of the national wealth contributed by millions of tourists.
Italians who spend the summer abroad are expected to change their destination this year in favor of the enormous tourist offer in their own country .
The Italians breathed relief, although continuously by all the media, the railway, air and navigation stations were broadcasting messages alerting the public to maintain security measures while avoiding human contacts, washing their hands several times a day and wearing gloves on the possible. Masks or chinstraps to protect the nose and mouth are worn by all and remain compulsory.
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Across the country, the intense movements of people were normal, causing moderate concern among health workers, who fear that so much circulation of human beings also means the coronavirus, which has caused almost 34 thousand deaths since the beginning of the epidemic, on February 21. .
This Tuesday there were 55 deaths in 24 hours, the lowest figure, with a reduction of those infected to 40 thousand internees. But contagions rose to 315 in 24 hours , with a slight rise compared to the previous days, in a picture of net weakening of the pandemic.
Cars on a highway that connects Italy with its neighbors, this Wednesday / AP
Coronavirus activity continues to be concentrated in three regions , which are Lombardy, Piedmont and Emilia Romania, with 81% of the total number of infected, while eight regions do not register new patients and the total number of infected in the southern regions of Rome is reduces to 8%.
The data strengthened trust among travelers. High-speed trains left from early morning from Milan and Turin to the south of the country, most of them bound for Calabria, where thousands of people later embarked by sea to neighboring Sicily.
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Many Sicilian, Pugly and Calabrian passengers were happy and excited at the maritime stations, "to be able to return after so long to visit our families." Calabria and Sicily limited themselves to monitoring passenger temperatures on motorways, railway stations and ship terminals . Many also made the journey in the opposite direction, from Sicily to Piedmont, Lombardy and other regions to the north, returning to their jobs.
Several travelers pass a temperature control at Milan Central Station, before taking a train./ EFE
In Puglia stricter sanitary controls were imposed. For example, travelers who come must register to control their movements. Like other regions, they are offered automated programs on cell phones. Everyone must file their movements for 30 days.
Tracking app on cell phones
Health checks are on high alert because the strategy is to immediately isolate any coronavirus outbreaks that occur. Four regions began experimenting with the Immunes program, which detects contact with the infected through a program on the cell phone that is expected to be disseminated to millions of Italians in the coming weeks, as a sure guarantee against the circulation of the disease.
Several regions have their own free programs that supply travelers with explanations in various languages for tourists.
Sardinia imposed the strictest control measures on travelers who arrived on Wednesday, to defend the low level of infected and dead registered on the island. Non-residents in Sardinia must submit to the supervision of the authorities determined to act as soon as there are indications of contagion. Sardinian Governor Christian Solina signed an ordinance this Tuesday that requires travelers to show with the boarding pass or identity document the controls of the "Sardinia safe" program that are carried out frequently via cell phone.
A person arrives at Termini central station in Rome. / EFE
Throughout the railway and air stations, hundreds of thermal scanners monitored the temperature of the passengers throughout the day. He who registers at least 37.5 degrees cannot get on the means of transport and is immediately subjected to swabs to see if he is infected.
At Fiumicino airport, air traffic was reopened with 45 flights, national and international. A sign of normalization was the arrival of a flight from New York by the Alitalia company. "In the coming days the number of flights will increase significantly, but we will keep the reins short to avoid surprises with the increase in infections," explained health officials at the country's main airport.
The border that registered the most attention during this day was that of France. Kilometer rows to and from France delayed movement due to the self-certifications the French require of Italian travelers, especially at the San Ludovico Bridge station. The French can enter Italy freely. The Paris government announced that it will completely free the border with Italy from Monday 15.
With a chinstrap in Termini, Rome. / EFE
Austria announced that it will control the contagion situation in Italy and that it hopes to fully liberate the movement at the border also from Monday 15.
In Rome and Milan, the two largest metropolitan areas, there was intense movement of vehicles on the routes leading to the motorways. The rows of cars swelled but only during a few rush hours.
It is expected that in the next few days, the sensation of recovered normality will move many Italian tourists towards the beaches and mountains. Gradually, many European visitors will also begin to arrive. The Austrian border is open to those traveling from Germany and Italy. In northern Italy, thousands of Germans and Austrians own summer houses at sea but also in the great Italian lakes. They are expected to arrive from the end of this month.
Reunion. A woman is reunited with her children in Switzerland, newly arrived from Italy. / AP
Meteorological data indicates that Europe will have a very hot and suffocating summer in July and August.