Life under Level 3 (and a bit) – What do the latest restrictions mean?

As some Border counties move to Level 4 of the Government’s Living with Covid strategy with added restrictions in place for the rest of the country, we take a look at what the new changes entail.

Is the country now at Level 4 restrictions?

No. Donegal, Cavan and Monaghan move to Level 4 at midnight (read my Q&A on Level 4 here) on Thursday October 15th until November 10th. The rest of the country remains at Level 3 though the Government announced added restrictions on Wednesday night, so it’s sort of Level 3 and a bit.

What are these added restrictions for the rest of the country?

There is now a nationwide ban on visitors to homes or gardens with the exception of visits for essential purposes, such as providing care to children, elderly or vulnerable people.

So I can’t meet with anyone outside my household?

You can. In outdoor settings away from your home/garden, up to six people from no more than two households can meet while maintaining strict social distancing, including for outdoor exercise and dining.

Is sport still allowed to happen in larger groups?

Outdoor non-contact training in pods of up to 15 is still allowed, with an exemption for professional/elite/inter-county/senior club championship sports. In terms of indoors, individual training only is allowed with no exercise or dance classes to take place.

No matches or other sporting events should take place, with the exception again for professional, elite and inter-county championship and horse-racing which should all take place behind closed doors.

Is there anything else new to the current Level 3 restrictions?

An exemption which had allowed GAA Club Championship games to be played behind closed doors has been removed and so the competition will not go ahead.

Has the Government said anything about public adherence to the current guidelines?

Taoiseach Micheál Martin pointed out on Wednesday night that the nationwide Level 3 status has been in place for a week and the Government is studying infection patterns as Level 3 can have a “significant impact” on the spread of the disease.