Bullocks Harbour, Great Harbour Cay placed under two-week lockdown

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Country locking back down as Bahamians fail to protect themselves, get vaccinated or avoid large gatherings…

NASSAU| Following a spike in COVID-19 cases, Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis has imposed a two-week lockdown on Bullocks Harbour and Great Harbour Cay in the Berry Islands, effective Saturday 22 May 2021 at 8pm.

83 cases have been confirmed on the Berry Islands since the start of the pandemic in March 2020.

According to the Office of the Prime Minister, the lockdown will help “to slow and control the spread of the COVID-19 virus in those communities.”

Minnis also announced that negative PCR tests will be required for travel to and from Andros and Cat Island, which have also seen a surge in new cases.

Travel to and from Bullocks Harbour and Great Harbour Cay is prohibited during the lockdown, except for essential workers, which include the Royal Bahamas Police Force, Royal Bahamas Defence Force, healthcare professionals, mailboat operators, or as otherwise approved by the Competent Authority.

There will be no in-person activities permitted.

Every agency, business or establishment shall remain closed except for the Royal Bahamas Police Force, the Royal Bahamas Defence Force, the Government Community Clinic and COVID-19 vaccination sites.

No person, other than an essential worker shall leave his or her place of residence for any purpose other than for the purpose of seeking urgent medical attention or on prescribed days to purchase food, water and other essential items.

The Administrator or a designee is permitted to distribute food and water on behalf of the Government or the National Food Distribution Task Force only.

The National Food Distribution Task Force has organized a vessel to deliver adequate food and water supplies to Bullocks Harbour and Great Harbour Cay.

The vessel is expected to arrive by Sunday 23 May, weather permitting.

The mailboat will be permitted to deliver food and other essential supplies to the Berry Islands. Food stores will be permitted to offload supplies, restock and provide services to the public during the two days immediately following the arrival of the M/V Gurth Dean Mailboat.

The Royal Bahamas Defence Force has been mobilized to monitor waters surrounding the Berry Islands.

Health teams are currently in the Berry Islands to carry out contact tracing and administer the COVID-19 vaccine to residents who choose to receive the vaccine.

Health officials said they are also monitoring the progress of the COVID-19 virus on the islands of Cat Island and Andros, where outbreaks are also occurring. Surveillance and vaccination teams have also been deployed to Cat Island and Andros.

Persons traveling to and from Cat Island and Andros will be required to produce a negative RT PCR test, no older than five days before date of travel, or provide documentation to prove full vaccination.

Harvesting of crabs on Andros will be permitted during curfew hours between 8pm and 5am.