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‘I’m Hoping That Common Sense Prevails’: Maltese Emergency Doctor Warns Against NYE Mass Gatherings

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Mater Dei Hospital emergency doctor Michael Spiteri warned against mass gatherings after hundreds of people were seen flocking to Gozo yesterday afternoon.

“I am just hoping that common sense prevails,” Spiteri said.

“Judging from the queues for the Gozo ferry, I am not being very optimistic but I remain hopeful.”

Yesterday, backed-up traffic was reported in Ċirkewwa as early as 12.35pm, with Maltese Roads Traffic Updates stating that queues started from near the Mellieħa Red Tower.

A woman even alleged that it took her as long as two hours and 45 minutes to make it through the Ċirkewwa queues and get to Gozo.

“Large gatherings from outside your household remain extremely risky but I believe that the vast majority of Maltese got the message and will exercise ample caution and follow Pulic Health guidelines,” Spiteri continued.

“If this is not the case, then we shall meet at the emergency department around the 15th of January.”

As of last month, booking.com showed that 89% of Gozo establishments and 75% of Maltese establishments were unavailable for New Year’s Eve – despite the health authorities’ advice to exercise caution.

Yesterday it was also announced that 70 elderly individuals were quarantined and another eight tested positive for COVID-19 after attending a tombola lunch subsidised by the San Ġwann local council.

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