Writing about bikes for 20 years. Published in dozens of titles on five continents. Mildly obsessed with discovering how things work.
Ducati and Piaggio have closed their museums and temporarily suspended factory tours in response to the spread of Coronavirus in Italy.
The north of the country has been particularly hit by the virus, with the worst outbreak in Europe. As a result, several areas are in lockdown and firms are restricting travel and visitation to try to stem the spread of the disease.
Ducati’s Italian-language website has a message reading (via Google Translate):
“We inform you that, following the instructions received by the President of the Emilia Romagna Region and by the Ministry of Health, all visits to the Museum, the Factory and the Physical Education Laboratory in Motorbike are suspended from 24 February 2020 until 31 March 2020 included.
“We apologize for the inconvenience as of now.”
While Piaggio’s museum at its factory in Pontedera is further south, it has also been closed, with a message reading:
“We apologize with our visitors. Because of the spread of disease COVID-19 (also known as Coronavirus) and according to authorities’ instructions, Piaggio Foundation has decided to temporarily suspend guided tours and activities in the Piaggio Museum. Since Piaggio Museum receives hundreds of visitors from all over the world, it will remain closed from 25th February as a precautionary measure and a sign of respect towards the local community and the employees.
“As soon as the medical emergency is called off, the Museum will immediately open to the public.”
Piaggio is also minimising the number of meetings at its base, instead turning to conference calls where possible.