COVID-19: Dubai shuts 32 food outlets for violating safety measures

As many as 472 warning notices were issued as well

  
People sit in a restaurant after its reopening at 30% capacity, following the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Dubai, United Arab Emirates May 13, 2020. Image used for illustrative purpose.

People sit in a restaurant after its reopening at 30% capacity, following the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Dubai, United Arab Emirates May 13, 2020. Image used for illustrative purpose.

REUTERS/Abdel Hadi Ramahi
 

A total of 32 food establishments have been ordered temporarily closed by Dubai Municipality since the beginning of this year for violating precautionary Covid-19 measures, according to a top official.

As many as 472 warning notices were issued as well, said Sultan Al Taher, head of the Food Inspection Section at the Municipality.

“The most prominent violations that were detected were non-compliance with social distancing and not wearing personal protective equipment, such as masks and gloves, during food preparation — as well as not using approved sterilisation and disinfection materials,” said Al Taher.

The inspections were conducted in restaurants, cafeterias, cafes that offer food, grocery stores, supermarkets, and bakeries. Inspectors also monitored delivery vehicles to ensure that they were sterilised, maintained food safety measures after each order, and that delivery workers changed masks and gloves after each order.

“In the 45 days since the beginning of this year, the Municipality inspectors carried out 5,841 field inspection visits to ensure that food establishments are adhering to the procedures and controls set by the health authorities to combat the spread of the new coronavirus,” he explained.

“While 32 food establishments in Dubai were temporarily closed, the number of committed food establishments amounted to 5,264. However, 577 establishments were found non-compliant, in addition to that warnings that were issued to 472 outlets,” he added.

He pointed to the increased level of awareness of many owners and workers in food establishments in Dubai, and the commitment to precautionary measures compared to the previous inspection cycle, which witnessed a greater number of violations.

What do Municipality inspectors check for?

> Daily follow-up records for the hygiene of workers

> Recording of sterilisation and disinfection operations

> Ensuring that food safety requirements are applied during receiving, preparation and storage of food

> Display at healthy temperatures

> Application of hygiene and sterilisation procedures to prevent cross-contamination

> Applying pest control measures.

Community members are encouraged to contact the Municipality's toll-free number 800900 to report any violations related to food safety.

 

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