Country extends hours of national sterilisation programme as some ‘reckless’ people spark surge in Covid-19 cases
The UAE is to tighten restrictions on movement during Eid and crackdown on “reckless and irresponsible” people flouting Covid-19 safety guidelines.
Tougher fines, including Dh3,000 for leaving home without a face mask, have also been imposed.
Members of the public must remain at home from 8pm until 6am each day from Wednesday “until further notice”, as the national disinfection programme’s hours were extended.
Residents currently must remain indoors from 10pm until 6am, apart from essential journeys or if they work in a sector exempt from the rules.
Other penalties include Dh50,000 fines for those who do not complete home quarantine.
They also apply to schools, universities, cinemas, gyms, supermarkets, parks, beaches and pools that do not adhere to coronavirus measures.
People organising gatherings will be fined Dh10,000, with those taking part charged Dh5,000.
The UAE on Monday announced a further 832 coronavirus cases on Monday, after 37,844 more tests were carried out.
The new infections take the country’s total to 24,190.
Officials said 1,065 more patients recovered from the virus for a total of 9,577.
Four more people died taking the country’s death toll to 224.
Dr Saif Al Dhaheri, spokesman for National Authority for Emergency, Crisis and Disaster Management, said the increase in cases was a result of people failing to adhere to preventive measures.
“In Ramadan, there has been an increase in cases as a result of some individuals who were reckless and didn’t take measures into account,” Dr Al Dhaheri said.
He said it was crucial for members of the public to abide by social distancing practices during the traditionally festive Eid Al Fitr holiday.
Dr Al Dhaheri urged families and friends to avoid gathering and instead offer their best wishes through social media.
He advised people not to give presents and money, as is common during the Eid Al Fitr holiday.
The official confirmed supermarkets and pharmacies would continue to operate round the clock despite the increased restrictions on movement.
From Wednesday, malls will be open from 9am until 7pm each day, with a two-hour limit on visits.
Salem Al Zaabi, head of public prosecution for emergencies, crises and disasters, said the new fines and restrictions were in place to stop reckless behaviour.
“We have noticed there are certain behaviours from some individuals who have been reckless and irresponsible,” Mr Al Zaabi said.
“Some are violating these instructions. This has big repercussions.”
UAE government spokeswoman Dr Amna Al Shamsi said the country required the full commitment of the community to stave off the threat of Covid-19.
“The increasing number of infections is due to the irresponsible behaviour of some,” Dr Al Shamsi said.
She thanked those who obeyed precautionary measures implemented by authorities.
“Despite those violations, we would like to thank hundreds and thousands who are complying with all measures and health guidelines for their well-being and those around them,” Dr Al Shamsi said.
Full list of updated fines:
- Dh3,000 fine for not wearing a face mask in public
- Dh3,000 for anyone not adhering to social distancing
- Dh3,000 fine for breaking the stay at home order between 8pm and 6am
- Shopping centres, commercial outlets or other establishments that fail to implement the safety measures will be fined Dh5,000
- Dh3,000 fine for breaching preventive measures while exercising or taking part in sports or recreational activities in public or at hotel pools or beaches
- Dh3,000 fine for owner of a company or establishment that fails to comply with the 30 per cent capacity cap
- Dh50,000 fine for whoever does not adhere to mandated home quarantine or quarantine at a facility as instructed by authorities
- Dh50,000 fine for whoever does not remain in hospital or comply with prescribed treatment and does not repeat tests as requested by authorities
- Dh10,000 fine for refusing to install or register for a smart tracking application, failure to carry the electronic tracking device for home quarantine cases and losing or destroying the device. The offender will also bear the cost of damages
- Dh20,000 fine for hacking the systems of these applications or smart devices, damaging or illegally obtaining information from them. The offender will also bear the cost of damages
- Dh10,000 fine for refusing to notify authorities of a damaged or lost smart device within 24-hours
- Dh1,000 fine for visiting a healthcare facility other than at a prearranged time or for unnecessary situations
- Dh1,000 fine for retaking a Covid-19 test within two weeks without a valid reason
- Dh50,000 fine for educational institutions, cinemas or gym or open air stores or parks, or beaches or pools, or supermarkets who do not adhere to coronavirus measures
- Dh5,000 for the person in charge of the opening of above
- Dh20,000 fine if whoever is responsible for an entity that doesn’t have a thermal camera in place
- Dh10,000 fine for non-compliance with the temporary suspension of tourist cruises
- Organisers of public or private gatherings to be fined Dh10,000 and participants Dh5,000 each
- Car travel fine: if more than three people in one car, unless it is one family will be fined Dh3,000
- Anyone caught transporting goods in a car not authorised for that purpose will be fined Dh5,000
- Dh3,000 fine for not disposing of temporary structures, clothes, luggage or other items that may be contaminated
- Dh20,000 fine for medical labs that fail to immediately report new data to authorities
- Dh5,000 fine for not maintaining standards for cleaning and sterilising equipment, devices and machines in establishments that produce food
- Dh1,000 fine if workers at an establishment or in shared housing are not maintaining personal hygiene practices
- Dh1,000 fine for not adhering to rules on the use of chemicals for cleaning or pest control
- Dh1,000 fine for displaying, transferring or storing food, health, veterinary, cosmetic or pesticide products incorrectly
- Dh2,000 fine for those who breach instructions to preserve health and safety and prevent the spread of communicable diseases
- Dh5,000 fine for not adhering to provisions of communicable diseases law when burying or transporting the body of someone who died of a communicable disease
- Employers and owners of a company with workers caught not wearing a mask in public will be fined Dh5,000. The employee or worker will be fined Dh500
- Dh10,000 fine for failing to take precautionary measures for the crew of cruise ships
- Dh5,000 fine for manager of a company for failing to sanitise private transport vehicles
- Dh30,000 for holding private classes and a Dh20,000 for the owner of the place where the lesson was held
- Dh20,000 fine for anyone who publishes private patient information
- Dh5,000 fine for failure to comply with information security standards approved by the government or private health facilities
- Dh10,000 fine for the owner of a company and for the driver of a private vehicle that breaches the ban on transporting workers between Emirates
- Dh5,000 for the owner of a company that fails to comply with precautionary measures when transporting workers excluded from the ban. These include capacity limits and mandatory use of face masks. A Dh500 fine will be issued to the worker involved
Mr Al Zaabi said repeat offenders face a minimum Dh100,000 fine and maximum six-month prison sentence.
Mr Al Zaabi said that the media will be able to publicly name offenders.