Civil protection

Updated 5th January 2023

Safe Communities Portugal’s legal basis in support of Civil Protection

Safe Communities Portugal basis for undertaking its Civil Protection role is defined in:

  • Our recognition as a Civil Protection Voluntary Organisation under Portaria n.º 91/2017 de 2 de março (Ordinance 91/2017 of 2nd March).
  • As a utilidade pública declared by the Council of Ministers (Diário da República n.º 96/2018, Série II de 2018-05-18).
  • Member of the Observatory for the European Project FirEUrisk
  • Member and signatory of the Regional
    Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction in the Algarve (PRRRC)
  • Member of the Monitoring Climate Action in the Municipality of Loulé (PMAC)
  • Our National protocol signed between the President of the ANPC and President Safe Communities Portugal 10th December 2015.
  • Our Regional Protocol signed between the Commander ANPC CDOS Faro and President Safe Communities Portugal, 31st July 2014.
  • As a Registered not for profit organisation.

These recognitions give us the mandate to work officially with government in the area of civil protection and, in the case of our CPVO status, to develop activities in the field of civil protection and which are recognized under the terms of this ordinance.

Page created: 12th November 2020

Latest update 28th July 2022

The Council of Ministers approved a resolution that extends the measures in the context of Covid-19 until 32:59 on August 31, 2022. “The rules currently in force remain”, said Minister Mariana Vieira da Silva at the after-meeting press conference.
In particular, the continuation of the mandatory use of a mask in public transport, pharmacies or Health services.

General behaviour guidelines
– Social distancing;
– Frequent hand washing;
– Respiratory etiquette.


Communique of Council of Ministers Maintaining Situation of Alert in mainland Portugal until 31st July 2022

Communiqué of the Council of Ministers of 30 June 2022 – The Council of Ministers today approved the resolution renewing the declaration of the alert situation throughout mainland Portugal, within the scope of the Covid-19 disease pandemic, until 23:59 on July 31, 2022.

A decree-law amending some measures already existing and applicable in the context of the Covid-19 disease pandemic was approved, namely:

– Extension of the validity of medical certificates of multipurpose incapacity for the purposes of social, economic and tax benefits until December 31, 2022, in case their validity expired in 2019 or 2020, and until December 31, 2023, in the case whether its validity has expired or expires in 2021 or 2022;

– Extension until December 31st, 2022:

• the deadline for micro, small and medium-sized companies, when co-contractors within the scope of public procurement, to receive and process electronic invoices;

• the suitability of documents and visas relating to stay in national territory, provided that the holder proves that he has already scheduled the respective renewal

These measures take effect on July 1, 2022.


Latest update: 21st April 2022

Resolution of the Council of Ministers 41-A/2022 published 21st April 2022

Read full law in informal English here 

Wearing of facemasks

Decree-Law No. 30-E/2022, of April 21
The mandatory requirement to wear masks finished on 22nd April 2022 except for the following exceptions.
The announcement was made at the end of the Council of Ministers, and the decree amending the rules was published in the last hours of Thursday 21st April, entering into effect Friday 22nd April – The day following its publication of the law.
Where it is still mandatory
Health establishments and services, residential or reception structures or home support services for vulnerable populations or the elderly, as well as integrated continuing care units of the National Network of Integrated Continued Care and, also, the collective passenger (buses etc) transport, including air transport, as well as in the transport of passengers by taxi or TVDE. In these instances the obligation to wear a mask or visor under the terms of this article is only applicable to people over 10 years of age.
Additionally, the Passenger Locator Form is revoked, and passengers on flights to or from mainland Portugal or cruise ships that dock here are no longer required to fill in the Passenger Locator Form.
Council of Ministers Communique – 21st April 2022
1. “The Council of Ministers today approved the declaration of the alert situation throughout mainland Portugal until 23,59 hrs on May 5, 2022, and introduced changes with regard to measures to prevent and combat the Covid-19..
Given the positive evolution regarding the epidemiological situation in Portugal, the Government decided to review some of the restrictive measures still in force, namely:
The mandatory use of a mask is limited to places characterized by the special vulnerability of the people who frequent them (health establishments and services, residential structures, reception or home support services for vulnerable populations or the elderly, as well as units of long-term care) and to places characterized by intensive use (collective passenger transport, including air transport, passenger transport by taxi or TVDE);” 
The Passenger Locator Form is revoked, and it is no longer mandatory to fill it out by passengers on flights to or from mainland Portugal or cruise ships when they dock in mainland Portugal”;
The rules for carrying out diagnostic tests for SARS-CoV-2 are no longer fixed, and it is now foreseen that their use/performance can be determined by the DGS”;
EU Digital Certificate “the EU Digital Covid Certificate in the test or recovery modality or other proof of laboratory performance, negative test under the terms defined by the DGS and INSA or vaccination booster dose certificate is no longer required, for access to residential structures and for visits to health care establishments, with the DGS being responsible for determining specific standards and guidelines for the protection of the most vulnerable populations”.

Latest update 19th February 2022

Resolution of Council of Ministers 25-A/2022 published 18th February 2022

Highlights as follows – Read full law in informal English here:

Restrictions which are ending from 19th February 2022

  • Confinement of people considered as contacts of risk ceases to apply
  • End on capacity limits in establishments and any other places opened to the public
  • End of requirement to present proof of testing with a negative result for access to major events, sports venues, bars and nightclubs
  • The teleworking recommendation ends and by Decree-Law n. 23-A/2022 also the control of body temperature to workers for the purpose of access and stay in the workplace
  • End on presentation of certificates, except at border control

Restrictions that are continuing from 19th February

i) Presentation of the EU COVID Digital Certificate in the modalities of test or recovery certificate, as provided for in Decree-Law No. 54-A/2021

ii) Presentation of other proof of laboratory testing with a negative result

iii) Carrying out a test with a negative result, under the terms to be defined by the DGS and INSA


  • Visits to nursing homes
  • Visits to inpatients

2. Decree-Law 10-A/2020 via article 13-B Use of masks and visors remains in force by Decree-Law 23-A/2022

3. Exceptions to the rules on presentation of certificates

  • Those under 12 years old
  • Anyone who demonstrates having been vaccinated with a booster dose of a COVID-19 vaccine

Previous update 9th January 2022

Resolution of Council of Ministers 2-A/2022

Effective 00.00 hrs 10th January 2022

Highlights as follows – Read more full law here in informal English.

Testing is still mandatory for visits to nursing homes or for visiting patients hospitalized, as well as for access to large events, events without assigned seats or in improvised venues and sports grounds (unless otherwise decided by the Directorate-General of Health).
Exemption – Those who have been vaccinated with a booster dose more than 14 days ago or have a recovery certificate.
Bars and nightclubs – Reopen after 22h00 of January 14.
Entry with a negative test or Recovery certificate.
Exemption – Those who have been vaccinated with a booster dose more than 14 days ago.
Ban on drinking alcoholic on the public spaces remains in force.
Certificates – Vaccination or Recovery or Test – for access to restaurants, tourist establishments and local accommodation, cultural shows, cinemas, events with assigned seating and gyms.
-Self-tests to be valid under the terms to be defined by the DGS and by INSA, IP.
Work – Compulsory teleworking is extended until January 14.
After this date, it will be “recommended”.
Shopping establishments – Bans on sales and promotions end, but restrictions on capacity remain: only one person per five square meters.

Communique of Council Ministers with main measures here in informal English

Previous Update 23rd December 2021

The Council of Ministers announced the measures for the period 25th December 2021  to 9th January 2022

Read in conjunction with the Resolution of the Council of Ministers 181-A/2021

Download in informal English here

Given the current regime, the following changes are highlighted:
–  A set of special measures applicable between December 25, 2021 and January 9, 2022 is foreseen:
  • Mandatory telework throughout the continental national territory;
  • The closure of bars, other non-spectacled drinking establishments and establishments with dance venues is determined;
  • Limits are set in relation to the occupation of publicly accessible spaces, providing as a rule the indicative maximum occupancy of 0.20 people per square meter of area, with the exception of establishments providing services;
  • New rules are established for access to tourist establishments or local accommodation, with access now depending on the presentation of the EU COVID Digital Certificate in the form of test or recovery certificate, or on the presentation of proof of laboratory testing with negative result;
  • Access to events, namely non-religious New Year’s parties or celebrations, family events, including weddings and baptisms, corporate events, cultural events or sporting events, depends on the presentation of the COVID Digital Certificate of the EU in the modalities of test or recovery certificate, or the presentation of proof of laboratory testing with a negative result, without prejudice to the definition by the DGS of the characteristics of the events in which the presentation of these certificates or tests is waived.
A set of special measures is foreseen for the Christmas and New Year period:
  • On December 24, 25, 30 and 31 and January 1, 2022, access to food and beverage establishments and gambling establishments, casinos, bingos or similar, depends on the presentation of the COVID Digital Certificate from EU in the modalities of test or recovery certificate, the presentation of other proof of laboratory testing with a negative result or the performance of a test with a negative result, under the terms to be defined by the DGS and INSA;
  • The same requirement applies to guests of tourist establishments or local accommodation when accessing celebrations held in these places when proof of a test with a negative result has been presented for more than 72 or 48 hours, depending on the type of test;
  • On December 24, 25, 30 and 31, 2021 and January 1, 2022, the consumption of alcoholic beverages in open-air spaces with public access and public roads is prohibited, with the exception of the open terraces of food and beverage establishments. similar duly licensed for that purpose.
2.  The decree-law that amends the measures within the scope of the COVID-19 disease pandemic with regard to the suspension of academic and non-teaching activities and the establishment of special rules in terms of consumer protection was also approved. In particular, it is determined that:
–  Suspension of classroom and non-teaching activities will now cover the period from December 27th to January 9th;
–  The application of the exceptional family support regime foreseen for the period from 2 to 9 January 2022 will also cover the period from 27 to 31 December 2021;
–  In terms of consumer protection and sales on balances, it is established that:
  • The period for exercising consumer rights that ends between December 26 and January 9, or within 10 days after that period, is extended to January 31, 2022;
  • Between December 25, 2021 and January 9, 2022, commercial practices with a price reduction are prohibited in establishments;

Previous update 28th November 2021

The Council of Ministers announced the following new measures will come into effect Wednesday 1st December 2021. 

Read in conjunction with Resolution of Council of Ministers  Situation of Contingency 157/2021 dated 27th November 2021 which has the full details.

In informal English here: 

1. The Council of Ministers approved on 25th November the resolution declaring the situation of calamity throughout the continental national territory as of 00:00 am on December 1st.
The following changes are highlighted in relation to the current regime:
It is determined, between 2 and 9 January 2022, the mandatory adoption of the telework regime in the continental national territory, regardless of the employment relationship, whenever the functions in question allow it;
Teleworking is recommended whenever the functions in question allow it;
The presentation of the EU COVID Digital Certificate for access to:
  • tourist and local accommodation establishments;
  • restaurant and similar establishments (not applicable in relation to stay in open terraces);
  • events with marked places;
  • gyms.
The mandatory submission of a negative test (even for vaccinated) is determined when accessing:
  • Visits to residential structures (for the elderly, integrated long-term care units of the National Integrated Long-term Care Network and other residential structures and responses dedicated to children, youth and people with disabilities);
  • Visits to users admitted to health care establishments;
  • Large-scale events without marked seats or improvised venues and sports venues;
  • Bars and clubs.
Closing of clubs and bars between the 2nd and 9th of January.
A number of special measures are introduced in the field of testing for travel purposes, including:
  • Requirement, for all flights to mainland Portugal, to present the EU COVID Digital Certificate in the form of a test certificate or proof of negative test (nucleic acid amplification test or rapid antigen test), carried out at 72 or 48 hours prior to departure time;
  • the application, with the necessary adaptations, to land, sea and river borders of the rules applicable to entry into national territory by air is determined. 
2. The decree-law amending the measures in the scope of the COVID-19 disease pandemic was also approved, namely:
Extends the exceptional and transitory regime for the reorganization of work and minimization of the risk of transmission of the COVID-19 disease infection within the scope of labour relations until March 31, 2022;
Extends the extraordinary income support of workers until the last day of February 2022;
Suspends classroom, non-teaching and training activities in educational establishments and social facilities between January 2nd and 9th, 2022, which will be compensated with 5 days of classes during Carnival and Easter breaks. At the same time, childcare schools are again guaranteed for children or other dependents in charge of workers mobilized for the service or on standby, and the previous system of justification for absences, associated with support for children or other dependents in a minor position, is replicated. 12 years resulting from suspension of classroom activities and non-teaching activities outside periods of school interruption, safeguarding food support for students who need it;
Interruption, between January 2 and 9, of classroom activities at higher education institutions, without prejudice to ongoing assessments.
The use of a mask is now mandatory in:
  • Spaces, equipment and commercial and service establishments, regardless of the respective area;
  • Public buildings or buildings for public use where services are provided or acts involving the public are carried out;
  • Stadiums (clarifying that it is included in the concept of venues for sporting events and celebrations);
  • Buildings in which the entrance gates or the boarding, access or exit piers are located in the context of the use of public transport for passengers and air transport.


 Measures in force until 23.59 hrs 30th November 2021

 Resolution of Council of Ministers Situation of Alert 142-A/2021 29th October 2021

In Portuguese here

The epidemiological situation in Portugal with regard to the COVID-19 disease pandemic, considering, in particular, its evolution in recent weeks in terms of the number of new cases, deaths and hospitalizations, as well as in relation to the indicators to be taken into account, namely the relative ones. the assessment of the risk of transmission of the infection and the level of incidence, but also considering the high level of vaccination achieved in Portugal, justifies the renewal of the declaration of the alert situation throughout the mainland national territory.

In view of the foregoing, this resolution renews the alert status, in force throughout the continental national territory until November 30, 2021, with all rules and measures in force since October 1st being equally in force of 2021 under the Resolution of the Council of Ministers No. 135-A/2021 , of 29 September.

Read  summary below

Update 30th September  2021

Resolution of Council of Ministers – Situation of Alert 135-A/2021  from 1st October to 31st October 2021

Main measures (read full Resolution here)

Current Situation of Contingency replaced by Situation of Alert to 23.59 hrs 31st October 2021

• Opening of night life bars and clubs with a digital certificate or negative test;
• Restaurants no longer have a maximum limit of people per group;
• End of digital certificate requirement for access to restaurants, tourist establishments or local accommodation, bingo, casinos, group classes in gyms and spas;
• End of capacity limits, namely for: Weddings and Baptisms; business; cultural shows.
• Obligation to present the Covid EU Digital Certificate for: Travel by air or sea; Visits to homes and health facilities; Major cultural, sporting or corporate events; night life bars and clubs.
– The use of the mask is mandatory in: Public transport, care homes, hospitals, shows and event rooms, large surfaces (meaning shopping centres/Supermarkets)

Decree law 78-A/2021

Wearing of masks:

Especially important for the day to day life are the changes on :
Article 13-B
1 – The use of masks or visors is mandatory to access or stay inside the following places:
a) Commercial spaces and establishments, including shopping centers, with an area >400 m2;
b) Lojas do Cidadão;
c) Schools and nursery establishments, except in outdoor recreational spaces;
d) Concert halls, cinema, congress halls, venues for events of a corporate nature, temporary venues for events, namely cultural, or similar;
e) Sporting and events venues;
f) Health facilities and services;
g) Residential structures or home support services for vulnerable populations, elderly people or people with disabilities, as well as integrated continuous care units of the National Integrated Continuous Care Network and other residential structures and responses dedicated to children and young people;
h) Locations where this is determined in the norms of the General Directorate of Health.
2 – It is mandatory to wear masks or visors by workers in bars, clubs, restaurants and similar, as well as in commercial and service establishments where physical contact with the customer necessarily occurs.
4 – The use of masks or visors is mandatory in the use of public transport for passengers, as well as in the transport of passengers by taxi or TVDE (Uber like).
11- In the workplace, the employer may implement the measures that guarantee the protection of workers, including the use of appropriate personal protective equipment, such as masks or visors, without prejudice to the provisions of Decree-Law no 84/97, of April 16, in its current version.


Our Role in civil protection
Safe Communities Portugal’s role includes helping to create public awareness in areas such as rural fire prevention and others areas involving public safety. Setting fire to rural areas such as forests, shrub lands and agricultural areas, whether deliberately or through negligence, can result in a major disaster with possible loss of life, injury and destruction of infrastructure, land and property. Much of this is preventable

The specific roles of Safe Communities Portugal in such circumstances is to support the work of the authorities such as the ANEPC (National Emergency and Civil Protection Authority), ICNF, Bombeiros, GNR and other agencies, by helping to disseminate information to all communities and visitors to Portugal through this website, our newsletter and various seminars and displays.

To keep up to date with matters concerning forest fires, the UV index, fire risk, earthquake activity and weather click the bars to the right of this page. We have also, in liaison with the ANEPC, added links to some of the best meteorological websites sites on each our pages so you can obtain quality information and maps showing current and forecast conditions.

Everyone has a role to play, ranging from helping to prevent rural fires, removing leaves from guttering to help prevent flooding to checking on the elderly neighbours to see if they are OK in very hot weather! Learn more in our specific pages and help keep you community safe.

Safe Communities was invited in January 2022 to participate in the 7th National Resilient City Conference in Odemira. A copy of SCP presentation can be down loaded here:

Presentation Odemira January 2023

If you need to contact the Bombeiros for any reason (except emergencies when you should use 112) then click here for the full list of stations.

Role of the ANEPC
Civil Protection is the activity carried-out by the State, Autonomous Regions and Local Authorities, by citizens and by all public and private entities, with the aim of preventing collective risks that causes serious accidents or disasters, to attenuate its effects and to protect and help people and property in danger, whenever those situations occur. This is coordinated by the ANEPC.

Known previously as the ANPC, it became known officially as the ANEPC on 1st April 2019, the “E” denoting its coordinating role during emergencies.

Civil protection objectives are to: rescue and to assist people in danger; protect cultural and environmental assets and other assets of high public interest and to support the re-establishment of normality in the life of people living in the areas affected by serious accidents or disasters. Its responsibilities are:

  • Survey, forecast, evaluation and prevention of collective risks;
  • Permanent analysis of vulnerabilities facing risk situations;
  • Information and training of the population in order to raise awareness for self-protection measures and for the necessity of collaborating with the authorities;
  • Emergency planning, search and rescue, providing aid and assistance, as well as evacuation, lodging and population supplies;
  • Inventory of resources, availability of means and the most suitable way to mobilise them, at the local, regional and national levels;
  • Study and dissemination of adequate forms of protection of buildings in general, monuments and other cultural assets, infrastructures, archival patrimony, essential services facilities, as well as environmental and natural resources;
  • Forecast and planning of actions concerning the eventual isolation of areas affected by risks.

The ANEPC produces daily information on its website concerning the location and details of rural fires and other major incidents in Portugal. It is important especially during the dry season to check this information to ascertain the location of such fires and occurrences to avoid travelling to these areas. If you are in these areas these pages also keep you up to date with developments concerning the deployment of emergency services. Simply click “Rural Fires” and “Other occurrences” to obtain the daily information.


Restructuring of ANEPC wef 4th January 2023

The District Relief Operations Commands (CDOS) were replaced on Wednesday, January 4, by 24 Sub-Regional Emergency and Civil Protection Commands.
With the operation of the operating rooms covering the entire continental territory, a new reform is formed, in the civil protection system, which thus moves from a district structure to a sub-regional model.
The creation of 24 sub-regional emergency and civil protection commands was provided for in the organic law (Decree-Law no. 45/2019, April 1) of the National Emergency and Civil Protection Authority (ANEPC), which came into force in 2019. The organic law provides that the new regional and sub-regional structure would come into operation in a phased manner.
This change adapts the ANEPC organization to the continental territory organization models, namely inter-municipal communities (CIM), and metropolitan areas (AM), allowing a system closer to the citizens and the territorial reality laugh.
In addition to the headquarters of ANEPC and the National Emergency and Protection Command (CNEPC), based in Carnaxide, and the five Regional Emergency and Civil Protection Commands (COREPC) of the North, Center, Lisbon and Tejo Valley, Alentejo and Alg arve, created in December  2020 and Based, respectively, in Vila Real, Viseu, Almeirim, Évora and Loulé, ANEPC now has 24 subregional commands.
The location of the new Sub-Regional Emergency and Civil Protection Commands was determined in the previous legislature, under Office no. 3212-A/2020, of March 15, being complemented by Office No. the 14837-A/2020, of December 29th. The structures have the following locations:
✅ Alto Minho Sub-Regional Command, in Viana do Castelo;
✅ Sub-Regional Command of Alto Tâmega and Barroso, in Chaves;
✅ Sub-Regional Command of the Porto Metropolitan Area, in Porto;
✅ Sub-Regional Ave Command, in Fafe;
✅ Cávado Sub-Regional Command, in Braga;
✅ Douro Sub-Regional Command, in Vila Real;
✅ Sub-Regional Command of Tâmega and Sousa, in Baião;
✅ Sub-Regional Command of the Lands of Tras-os-Montes, in Bragança;
✅  Lower Edge Sub-Regional Command, in Castelo Branco;
✅ Sub-Regional Command of the Beiras and Serra da Star, in the Guarda;
✅ Sub-Regional Command of the Aveiro Region, in Aveiro;
✅ Coimbra Region Sub-Regional Command, in Coimbra;
✅ Sub-Regional Command of the Leiria Region, in Leiria;
✅ Viseu Sub-Regional Command Dão Laf andoes, in Viseu;
✅ Greater Lisbon Sub-Regional Command, in Lisbon;
✅ Sub-Regional Command of the Setúbal Peninsula, in Palmela;
✅ Sub-Regional Command of Lezíria do Tejo, in Almeirim;
✅ Sub-Regional Command of Medium Tejo, in Vila Nova da Barquinha;
✅ Western Sub-Regional Command, in Caldas da Queen;
✅ Sub-Regional Command of Alentejo Central, in Évora;
✅ Sub-Regional Command of Alentejo Litoral, in Grândola;
✅ Alto Alentejo Sub-Regional Command, in Portalegre;
✅ Lower Alentejo Sub-Regional Command, in Beja;
✅ Algarve Sub-Regional Command, in Loulé.



The IMPA is also provides extensive weather information including daily air temperatures in your area; this can be found here.

Windfinder specializes in wind, waves, tides and weather reports and forecasts for wind related sports like kite surfing, windsurfing, surfing, sailing or paragliding.
These are the real-time measurements from weather stations in Portugal. Check the current wind and weather observations when travelling to Portugal or during a vacation or sailing trip. The wind report map for Portugal gives you an overview to find the best conditions before heading to the beach, surf spot or launch site to go kiteboarding, windsurfing, surfing, sailing or paragliding.

Natural and Man Made Disasters
Natural and man-made disasters affect the lives of European citizens, the European economy and the environment every year. Whether of natural or man-made origin, disasters are becoming increasingly extreme and complex, exacerbated by the impacts of climate change in our interlinked economies, and are by nature irrespective of national borders. There is a need to support the improvement of European capacities to assess risk, as the first step towards the development of disaster prevention and emergency plans, while allowing European countries to assess their levels of preparedness and capabilities to manage disasters. In the context of the Union Civil Protection Mechanism (UCPM)1 , the European Commission has established a cross-sectoral overview of natural and man-made disaster risks the Union may face. this can be downloaded here.

Emergency planning
Since 2008 all ANEPC District and Municipal emergency plans that have been approved have been available in the Emergency Planning Information System for the public and can be downloaded here.

In May 2015 we produced a comprehensive newsletter about forest fires, the critical fire period, how and when to clean your land and contacting the emergency services. Download here to obtain your copy.
All prevention and protective information is from official sources.

Resource Centre Downloads

Meteorology is the study of the atmosphere, atmospheric phenomena, and atmospheric effects on our weather. Meteorology is important because of the impact of air conditions on life.

First of all weather forecasting has a vital role in preparing for extreme weather conditions such as high temperatures, heavy rain in order to prevent disasters.

Second, long term weather forecasting is important for agriculture. Drought can cause starvation. Meteorology is important for farmers since crops need water to grow up.

Meteorology is also important for both air and marine transportation. Windy weather effect planes and ships. Lightning can be dangerous for planes. High seas can impact on shipping. Airports may stop their operations and ships stay in harbours in extreme weather conditions.

It is also important so we can determine our daily activities and go about these in safety.

Safe Communities Portugal and the Portuguese Institute of the Sea and the Atmosphere have therefore collaborated together in order to promote the importance of the IPMA’s work in our day to day lives. The purpose of this page is to provide an introduction to their work and where more detailed information on their excellent comprehensive website can be found.

Simply click on the tab on the right of this page to link to the relevant pages of the IPMA website.