COVID-19: Florence & Tuscany Return to Orange Zone Status staring mid-February 2021

Florence and Tuscany will become a “zona arancione” (orange zone) with stricter anti-Covid regulations starting on February 14 for a minimum of two weeks.  Restaurants and bars will shut except to prepare take out and delivery orders.  Retail shops, supermarkets, grocery stores, newsstands and pharmacies may remain open in addition to hairdressers and nail salons.  Students can go to school in person at elementary and middle schools.  People cannot travel outside their town or city of residence except for work, necessity or health reasons nor leave the region where they reside.

Self-certification is not needed to leave home to move around one’s town of residence, but is necessary to travel within the region for reasons of work, health or emergency.

Museums and exhibitions, which had reopened on weekdays since mid-January, will close again.  The edict also mandates online classes for all high school students and public transportation (buses, trams and trains) will be limited to to 50% capacity.  The curfew from 10 pm to 5 am except for those who need to be out and about for “necessity, work or health reasons” remains in place.

The towns of Chiusi in southern Tuscany and Sansepolcro in western Tuscany have become “red zones” with the closing of retail shops because of an elevated number of contagions due to COVID-19 variants from the U.K., Brazil and South Africa.  These variants are thought to have come from the neighboring region of Umbria.

February 11, 2021 saw 727 new cases of Coronavirus cases in Tuscany, with 17 deaths from the disease.  (rosanna cirigliano)