Turkey

Turkish beach boasts social distancing to stem 2nd wave

Antalya beach also features motion-sensor restrooms and changing stations, lifeguards to ensure people keep distance in water

Ayse Yildiz   | 29.05.2020
Turkish beach boasts social distancing to stem 2nd wave Sunbeds are placed within the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic measures to stem the spread of the pandemic near Konyaalti Coastline in Antalya, Turkey on May 28, 2020. ( Mustafa Ciftci - Anadolu Agency )

ANTALYA, Turkey

A beach on the Turkish Mediterranean has set up social distancing areas and rules to guard against any new coronavirus outbreak.

Under a pilot program on Konyaalti Beach in the resort city of Antalya, 9 square meter private areas have been set up with a distance of 1.5-2 m between them.

Social distancing rules in beaches of Antalya

ANTALYA, TURKEY - MAY 28: An aerial view of sunbeds placed to comply the rules of social distance near Konyaalti Coastline within the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic measures in Antalya, Turkey on May 28, 2020. ( Mustafa Çiftçi - Anadolu Agency )

Sunbeds and umbrellas were also placed according to the social distancing rules, and special areas were prepared for people with disabilities.

On the beach, which features separate entry and exit points, signs ask domestic and foreign tourists to comply with a list of safety rules.

Wearing masks in shared areas is mandatory, and sunbeds are disinfected after each use.

Smoking is also restricted to prevent the spread of the virus. Instead of renting sunbeds, if they wish people can spread out their towels and use beach umbrellas in special sections.

Bathrooms and changing rooms have motion-sensor doors, taps, and soap dispensers, and single shower units have replaced multiple ones.

Wearing sandals is mandatory up to the edge of the water.

Swimmers are also required to set a distance of 1.5-2 m between them. Lifeguards will warn violators.

Dr. Ata Nevzat Yalcin, an infectious disease specialist at Akdeniz University Medical School, said the sea is very safe.

Underlining that measures against the pandemic are necessary year-round, Yalcin said:

“Maintaining 1.5-2 meters of social distance is necessary at sea too. It [coronavirus] can also be transmitted at sea through sneezing by a sick person.

More than 90% of infections at sea occur by sneezing and saliva from a sick person. To make transmission via water unlikely, social distancing must be maintained while swimming too.”

*Writing by Seda Sevencan

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