Streets in Italy and Spain Surge With People As Coronavirus Restrictions Are Eased

The streets of Italy and Spain saw foot traffic for the first time in months as two of Europe's hardest-hit countries amid the coronavirus pandemic begin easing lockdown restrictions.

Over the weekend, residents of both European countries were photographed enjoying the nice weather and outdoors as the governments begin to lift their strict stay-at-home orders after seeing a decrease in the number of deaths and cases over the last few weeks.

In Spain, officials allowed adults to outdoors for the first time since the lockdown began on March 15, CNN reported. Until now, Spaniards were only allowed to leave their homes to visit grocery stores or pharmacies.

However, there are still certain restrictions in place for those who wanted to go outside. According to CNN, individuals and couples aged 14 to 70 are only allowed outdoors from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. and 8 p.m. to 11 p.m.

“I literally haven’t been out of the house,” Rina Sondhi, who lives in Orvieto told the outlet of the last few months. “The biggest shock for me was the fresh air. Today I feel liberated, but with caution — that’s the important thing, we can have the freedom but we must be really careful.”

The lifting of restrictions is the country's "Phase 2" of returning to normal life after the pandemic, and the hashtag "#Phase2" was even trending on Twitter in Italy as people shared photos and notes of their first time outdoors, according to Business Insider.

On Monday, almost 4 million Italians also returned to work for the first time since the outbreak hit their country as it begins to open up a small number of businesses.

In its peak, Italy reported over 6,550 daily new cases of the virus, but on Sunday it recorded 1,389, BI reported. The country has seen their number of cases declining since late March.

To date, Spain accounts for 217,466 of global coronavirus cases and 25,264 deaths, while Italy claims 211,938 cases and 29,079 deaths, according to a Johns Hopkins database. Spain has also seen 118,902 recoveries from the virus and Italy has recorded 82,879.

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