Coronavirus: Italy tightens restrictions as death toll tops 4,000

Italy registers a record 627 deaths in one day from Coronavirus.

Italy has announced a further tightening of restrictions due to the Coronavirus emergency, in a bid to get people off the streets and remain at home, reports Italian news agency ANSA.

The nationwide measures are in place from 21 March until 25 March, the end-date of the existing order which in all probablility will be extended.

The measures include a ban on outdoor play or recreation, however people may still take outdoor excercise, on their own, provided they stay in the area of their residence and maintain a distance of at least one metre from others. 

Access to public parks, villas, gardens and playgrounds is prohibited.

Photo ANSA
The order closes outlets selling food and drink in train stations, at lakes, services areas and fuel stations. Food outlets along motorways will remain open but for take-away sale only. Food outlets at hospitals and airports may remain open provided people maintain a distance from each other.

On public holidays, and the days either side, all travel is forbidden to anywhere that is not your principal residence, including second homes.

The move comes as some 53,000 people have been charged with violating Italy's quarantine rules over the last eight days, according to Italian daily newspaper La Repubblica.

Milan has called in soldiers to patrol its streets while Rome is stepping up its controls on motorists and pedestrians still in circulation.

Italy's death toll from the Coronavirus pandemic has reached 4,032, according to the latest figures released on 20 March by the country's civil protection agency, and reported by ANSA.

The number of fatalities is up 627 since the day before, the highest one-day death count anywhere in the world, including China, since the Covid-19 pandemic began.

The overall number of those who have contracted Coronavirus in Italy - including the deceased and the 5,129 people who have recovered - now stands at 47,021.

Photo LaPresse