Apple has shuttered its 11 retail stores in Spain in an abundance of caution as the coronavirus continues to spread through Europe.
Cult of Mac has confirmed the closings will take effect Saturday after all the stores were open for business Friday. Social media reports indicate a small number of stores closed early on Friday.
An online message on each retail store webpage reads, “Due to current health precautions, this store will remain closed until further notice. If you need online support, visit getsupport.apple.com. Sorry for the inconvenience.”
Apple has not given customers online a time frame for re-opening the stores. An Apple spokesperson was not immediately available for comment to Cult of Mac.
Coronavirus in Spain…by the numbers
The Spanish government instituted a state of emergency for the country on Friday for 15 days, a measure to restrict the movement of people in a bid to slow down the spread of the coronavirus.
Catalonia, a region of 7.5 million people in northeastern Spain, announced a broad lockdown late Friday, saying it would start to “restrict entrances and departures.” There are two Apple retail stores in Catalonia, both in Barcelona.
The number of COVID-19 coronavirus cases is growing quickly in Spain, which is now the worst-affected European country after Italy, reported a 50% jump in fatalities to 120 on Friday.
At present, Spain ranks fourth among countries with the most deaths attributed to the virus with a total of 120. More than 4,200 cases have been reported. In total, there are over 139,500 confirmed cases worldwide with 5,131.
Situations at other Apple Stores
Thursday, Apple canceled ‘Today at Apple’ sessions at stores in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, and Brazil. On Friday, reports surfaced of an Apple retail employee at the company’s Santa Monica, Calif. retail store having tested positive for COVID-19.
Apple has instructed its employees and third-party services to double their efforts in cleaning stores as well as implement measures to institute social distancing among its customers.