On Monday, the government approved to limit the number of people allowed in stores. Effective on Wednesday, the new rule orders that a single person must occupy 15 square meters and every shop can work out how many people they can serve at once using this measurement.
This measure falls under the third level of danger of the new anti-pandemic system (PES), which was introduced by the Ministry of Health on Friday. Once the situation improves to the second level, two people will be allowed to occupy the 15 square meters space. If the situation reaches the first level, the number of shoppers allowed will also rise to 4.
PES assesses the epidemiological risk, taking into account such factors as the number of tests carried in relation to the number of positive tests returned, the R0 number, the number of infected per 100,000 people over the last 14 days, and the number of the elderly infected over the last 14 days. Currently, the Czech Republic remains in the worst, fifth category despite a significant improvement. Once it reaches the fourth level, several restrictions can be lifted including pushing the night curfew to 23:00.
However, even now, with these tightening regulations, some others will ease up. As of Wednesday, stores will be open until 9pm, possibly to balance the fact that less people will be allowed inside the stores now.
Several retailers have stepped forward to express their dissatisfaction with the new rules suggesting that they will only lead to panic and confusion. According to them, the new measure will force people to gather in lines in front of the store; move between the stores to find the one less occupied; and fail to be served, at all.