Nightclubs open their doors again

Nightclubs are opened from July 1
Nightclubs are opened from July 1 Source: Rauno Liivand

From Wednesday, nightclubs, hookah cafes and other similar entertainment establishments can reopen their doors. Clubs can host up to 100 people at a time.

As there is no definite definition of what a nightclub is, the simplest explanation is that premises with a dance floor can reopen from July 1, ETV's "Aktuaalne  kaamera" reported on Wednesday night from Tartu. However, restrictions still need to be followed.

Hanna Sepp, a specialist in communicable disease surveillance and epidemic control at the Health Board (Terviseamet), said: "The service provider must ensure that customers keep their distance from each other, with individual rooms at no more than 50 percent capacity, no more than 100 people at a nightclub at any one time. The service provider should ensure that the premises would be clean."

Märt Mägi, the manager of Shooters, which opened its doors in Tartu on Wednesday, said it is easy to keep track of the number of people allowed in but making them follow social distancing rules is not easy.

"How people should maintain distance from each other inside is less realistic, but since we have big enough rooms and very big rooms for 100 people, the people will scatter by themselves," Mägi explained. 

Berta Mürk, head of Vabank, said: "We do our best. We are trying to control the number of people because we have been asked and ordered to do so by the Health Board. It is unfortunately not in our power to get between two people who are talking or dancing."

The 100-person rule is rigid and applies to everyone, regardless of the size of the club. 

Mürk said: "It is very unequal because our nightclub is 500 square meters - the neighboring clubs are smaller, some of them are bigger. But there can only be 100 people at a time and here the question arises as to where this law comes from and why it cannot be done as our neighbors in Latvia have done, that the number of people [allowed in] is created from square meters."

The Health Board has said it will randomly check compliance with restrictions in nightclubs. Violators of the rules are issued precepts if they violate the nightclub rules for the first time. If the rules are not taken into account, financial penalties will follow. 


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Editor: Katriin Eikin Sein

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