Minors 12 years old and younger can no longer enter crowd-drawer Manila Baywalk Dolomite Beach beginning Tuesday (Oct. 26).
Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) has set such a ban to help guard against further spread of coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19), observing children and adults have been flocking to the beach in droves since the area reopened over a week ago.
“In support of the efforts of the national government and the directives of the Covid-19 Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases, children 12 years and below will not be allowed entry in the beach area starting tomorrow, October 26, 2021,” DENR said in its press statement released late Monday night.
DENR thanked the public for its enthusiasm and interest in visiting the dolomite beach.
“However, we would like to strongly remind everyone that the NCR is under Alert Level No. 3, we are still in a pandemic and the virus is still present,” it said.
Alert level 3 is the less stringent quarantine status of areas where IATF said Covid-19 case counts “are high and/or increasing, with total bed utilization rate and intensive care unit utilization rate at increasing utilization.”
The dolomite beach comprises Phase 1 of the beach nourishment project DENR is undertaking as part of Manila Bay’s rehabilitation.
Such DENR-led rehabilitation aims to make Manila Bay’s water fit again for contact recreational activities.
The government earlier opened the dolomite beach for a limited time, enabling the public to get a glimpse of the area while complying with basic Covid-19 health protocols.
These protocols include the wearing of face masks, maintaining at least a 1-meter distance between people, and frequent washing of hands.
DENR assured to continue working with government agencies concerned regarding the improvement of regulations covering Manila Bay’s dolomite beach so people’s visit there can be safer and more enjoyable.
“We appreciate the comments of His Eminence Archbishop Socrates Villegas on the matter and we commit to continuously abide by the guidelines of the IATF,” it said.