The current health emergency resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic continues to evolve. Until 21:00 on March 29, 2020, Ministerio de Salud reported a total of 2449 cases nationwide, of which 27 are in the Coquimbo region and 2 in the Atacama region. In addition, added to the national curfew (22:00 – 05:00) and the quarantine announced for some communes of the Metropolitan region (Lo Barnechea, Vitacura, Santiago, Las Condes, Providencia, Ñuñoa and Independencia), this weekend the cities of Chillán and Osorno joined the quarantine.
Our work is developed mainly in the regions of Coquimbo and Atacama. Both have sanitary customs at the height of Pichidangui and Punta Colorada, and at the airport of La Serena, with the aim of restricting the entry of infected people from central and southern Chile to the northern zone. Our staff has confirmed that these customs are carrying out the respective controls.
For our part, always having as a main objective the health of our staff, we have decided to extend the closure of operations of Las Campanas Observatory at least until April 27, 2020. Subsequently, the situation will be re-evaluated to decide on a possible extension of the closure. For the time being, we continue with reduced shifts with only critical staff, both at El Pino and in the mountain.
Following the above mentioned objective, and taking into account the recommendations of the health authorities, we ask you to respect as much as possible the measures of voluntary quarantine and social distancing. It is up to us not to expose ourselves to protect our health and that of our loved ones.
Leopoldo Infante Lira
Director Las Campanas Observatory