The second wave of the pandemic forced most of Europe to resort to stricter government measures, including the Czech Republic. Christmas markets were canceled, Christmas masses and celebrations as well. The change in restrictions will also have a significant impact on the New Year's Eve celebrations. The ban on going out at night on New Year's Eve will empty the streets, which is completely unimaginable for the capital city of Prague. So how will this New Year's Eve look like?
Hard lockdown from December 27th
We can forget about midnight outdoor celebrations this year. The government has announced a lockdown since Sunday, December 27th, which includes a curfew from nine in the evening until five in the morning, and this also applies to December 31st. In addition, it's forbidden to gather in a group of more than two people, so we will have to forego celebrating with friends this year.
Within the fifth degree of the anti-epidemic system DOG, the Czech Republic's current level, there is also a ban on alcohol consumption in public.
Pyrotechnics in Prague are banned
Pyrotechnics and New Year's Eve celebrations are inseparable. However, a new regulation has been in force since the beginning of December to ban the use of pyrotechnic articles in the center of Prague, in parks or near hospitals and sanitary facilities. This applies to most over-the-counter pyrotechnics. The aim of the regulation is primarily to increase the safety of the population and to reduce the noise that results in the death or injury of many animals in the capital every year. Every year Prague also organizes public celebrations on Wenceslas Square, which were of course also canceled this year.
"This New Year's Eve celebration will be different from the previous years - more intimate, but that doesn't have to mean it will be worse. I would like appeal to the citizens of Prague to celebrate New Year's Eve in the circle of their loved ones and to perceive this day as an opportunity to evaluate the past year, which was perhaps extremely challenging, but it taught us a lot. If the city's finances allow it the next year, we will be happy to return to the celebrations in the form of video mapping with music. But I personally would prefer a drone show. The wild firing of pyrotechnics is simply an anachronism that is being relegated in other European capitals as well,"
says Zdeněk Hřib, the mayor of the capital of Prague.
The regulation doesn't apply only to professional fireworks, which are subject to the professional obligation under the Act on Pyrotechnics. At present, however, no fireworks are planned, both on the part of the capital and the city districts.
"Every year, the city center resembled a battlefield during the New Year's celebrations. There were often various injuries not only to humans but also to animals. Every year we had to treat a lot of injured wild animals, especially swans. The individual departments of the IRS also had to intervene to an increased extent. We believe that the city center will be safer for both people and animals,"
says Petr Hlubuček, deputy mayor of the capital city of Prague .
Information signs across Prague
For sufficient awareness of the citizens, information signs about the ban on the use of pyrotechnics will be placed in parks and quays in order to prevent possible violations of the regulation. Its observance will be supervised in the streets of Prague by the City Police of Prague and the Police of the Czech Republic. Violation of the regulation is also subject to an administrative penalty, in administrative proceedings it is possible to impose a fine of up to 100,000 CZK, police officers can also impose a fine of up to 10,000 CZK on the spot.