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Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 6 March 2021

Dubai closes 32 food outlets for breaching Covid-19 rules this year

Authorities took action against companies for breaking protocols on social distancing and wearing of masks

Dubai authorities temporarily closed 32 food outlets and issued warnings to a further 472 for flouting Covid-19 rules this year.

Dubai Municipality said its inspectors had carried out 5,841 visits in 2021 to establishments such as restaurants, cafes, supermarkets and grocery stores to ensure they were following safety measures.

Traders are allowed to operate during the pandemic in line with a series of coronavirus regulations governing hygiene, wearing face masks and social distancing.

"The most prominent violations that were detected were non-compliance with social distancing, and not wearing personal safety equipment such as masks and gloves during food preparation, as well as not using approved sterilisation and disinfection materials,” said Sultan Al Taher, head of food inspection at the municipality.

He said awareness of public health requirements among owners and staff had risen since the department's last round of inspections.

During their visits to the premises, municipality inspectors monitor worker hygiene, the recording of cleaning operations and the preparation and storage of food.

Members of the public were urged to report breaches to the municipality through its hotline, 800 900.

A popular restaurant in Dubai owned by a celebrity chef was among those shut for breaking Covid-19 safety regulations last week.

CZN Burak Dubai was penalised on Friday after a spot check by the Department of Economic Development, in partnership with Dubai Tourism and Dubai Municipality.

The Turkish restaurant was back open on Sunday, following changes to its coronavirus safety measures.

Its owner and chef Burak Ozdemir posts cooking videos on social media and has more than 20 million followers on Instagram.

The restaurant in Downtown Dubai told The National that large numbers of diners had visited the restaurant in recent months, because of its online popularity.

The restaurant said it had reduced the number of seats inside and outside the venue and had been conducting weekly PCR testing of staff.

Updated: February 16, 2021 12:55 PM

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