BRIT tourists have been told not to attend illegal raves or “uncontrolled” private parties in Tenerife as health chiefs promise fines for irresponsible partygoers.
The warning comes after a spate of events across the Canary Islands that health chiefs have said failed to stick to coronavirus safety regulations.
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The Canaries have so far had a low incidence of COVID-19 infections and deaths.
Authorities have also worked hard over the last four months to relay a “safe destination” message to tourists, including the main British market.
Leaders say they aren’t prepared to let “reckless party-goers” spoil this, and will hand out harsh fines for gatherings that bypass security protocols.
This includes Tenerife, Gran Canaria, Lanzarote and Fuerteventura.
Anyone on the islands, whether locals or holidaymakers, is being urged to show responsibility and avoid illegal raves and other events at which anti-coronavirus measures are not properly observed.
They are also being asked to report any organisers of illegal events to the police.
The events mirror the unlicensed raves – as well as clashes with police attempting to shut them down – seen across the UK in recent weeks.
The Spanish government confirmed this week that almost half of the new outbreaks of coronavirus in the country are linked to nightlife and illegal parties.
Several videos have been posted on the social networks of various parties on the islands.
Canary Islands president Ángel Víctor Torres said he was “very unhappy” and “did not like” what he had seen.
One party reportedly saw around 50 people, virtually all of them without masks, packed onto a luxury yacht off the coast of Mogán, in Gran Canaria.
The owner of the boat said he had made it available to customers but that they ignored the warnings about the risks and the possible imposition of sanctions, Canary Television reported.
Another case occurred in the famous sand dunes of Maspalomas, also in Gran Canaria, where a massive crowd was filmed partying outside a beach bar.
Future events have been cancelled following widespread criticism of the lack of masks and social distancing.
Last week also saw police raid an event hosting at least 350 people at the Olivia Valere nightclub in Marbella.
Minister of Health of the Canary Islands Government, Blas Trujillo, said: “The business world of nightlife in the Canary Islands is complying with the measures set by the Canary Islands Government.
“However, unregulated leisure is what really worries us because it is where the greatest risk practices are currently taking place.”
He announced “immediate measures”, including harsh fines for organisers and possibly for those attending if caught.
Nightclubs in the Canaries are currently allowed to open but with restrictions and no dancing.
The Canary Nightlife Association says it backs the tough measures announced by the regional government to stop illegal parties and defended “responsible leisure that generates safe sanitary conditions for the public and workers in the sector.”
The Spanish mainland is currently in the process of easing its lockdown, but resorts throughout the Costa del Sol have seen cases rise this week, while residents in Barcelona are facing a renewed lockdown after a recent spike.