Coronavirus: 221 people fined at Dubai beaches in one day

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Dubai: Dubai Police fined 221 beachgoers in one day for failing to comply with coronavirus precautionary measures on the emirate’s beaches, an official said on Sunday.

Colonel Saeed Al Madhani, director of Ports Police Station in Dubai, said that in total 316 people were fined since Dubai beaches reopened on May 30.

“Many Dubai beaches witnessed thousands of beach-goers since easing the measures. We noticed many of them insist to sit near the beaches’ facilities without adhering to safe distancing,” he said.

In the first week of reopening, police were seen patrolling beaches to educate people of precautionary measures and people were warned about failing to wear masks and safe distancing, however after the first week police began issuing fines.

“Last Friday alone, 221 people were fined for not following precautionary measures,” said Al Madhani. “The majority of them were fined for not wearing face masks and failing to maintain a safe distance between each other,” he added.

Beach-goers can be slammed with Dh3,000 fines for not following precautionary measures.

“In first week of reopening, officers spoke to people about the importance of complying with the safety and health instructions, including keeping a safe distance and wearing face masks at all times if they were not in the water,” said Al Madhani.

The official added that people were warned against gathering in groups of more than five and were told they must wear face masks while sitting on the beach, walkways, or near beach restaurants, car parks, and other service areas.

Police patrols were intensified and drones were used to catch offenders, he added.

“People who did not respond to warnings in the first few days were fined,” he said.

Al Madhani said that Dubai Police were ready for the re-opening of beaches and have coordinated with different partners to set up a work plan.

“The plan is focusing on making sure everyone follows the precautionary measures. We are also focusing on providing lifeguards, rescuers and signboards that clarify rules. No sea accidents happened since the reopening of beaches,” he added.

Al Madhani, said that most people have been cooperative and have followed the measures, and that the fines aim to protect others who are committing to safety rules.

“Many people are complying with the orders and they need to be protected as the beaches represent a relief to people after the easing the movement instructions,” he added.

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