Hair today, gone tomorrow: 13 Abu Dhabi salons fined

Inspections were carried out to determine compliance with cleanliness and other health regulations.

Zulzar Ahmed, a barber in Baniyas East, says the municipality training programmes are helpful. Christopher Pike / The National
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ABU DHABI // Men’s hair salons in Baniyas and Al Ghabat have been fined for not following Abu Dhabi Municipality’s health regulations.

Thirteen salons were given warnings and penalties after the municipality carried out inspections to make sure its standards were being followed.

“During the campaign 53 hair-cutting salons in the Baniyas East and Al Ghabat area were inspected, and 13 of them were served with warnings due to the lack of compliance with the health rules and regulations in place,” said Mohammed Al Mansouri, the director of Al Wathba Municipal Centre.

The establishments were also warned over the use of unlicensed equipment.

Mr Al Mansouri said the most common offences reported were a failure to comply with the cleanliness of equipment and site, and failure to dispose of expired products and poor storage.

Other offences included the use of herbal mixes or creams of unknown origin, without labels.

Zulzar Ahmed, 30, a barber from Pakistan, was fined Dh500 for not keeping his shop clean.

“This is the second time that I’ve been fined for this,” he said. “I’m glad that it wasn’t a more serious offence that would risk the health of my clients.

“We’re used to the cleanliness fine. They issue those all the time. It’s a hard offence to prove. A few hairs on the ground warrants that fine. I do keep the store clean to the best of my ability, but I guess we have to be very diligent with our care.”

The municipal centre has held a number of training courses for salon workers to provide the public with higher levels of protection.

The municipality is instilling these standards in the training programmes that salon employees must take to be certified.

Mr Ahmed took the Dh300 course, which he said he enjoyed.

“I did learn some essential tips that are helping me with my job. I’m at a risk because there’s a chance that I’d have to work with a sick client.

“I was taught how to deal with such situations. I should be wearing a mask, take special care of tools used, and so on.

“Not everyone is required to take the course but I think there always needs to be one or two certified people in the salon at all times. It was definitely helpful to me.”

Satheesh Kumar, 32, a barber from India who works in Baniyas, said: “We’re used to the municipality. It’s part of our business. Sometimes they come frequently. Sometimes they don’t.

“I wasn’t fined during the latest inspection, but I was fined last year for cleanliness and the storage of expired items. We know the rules and regulations now.

“There was this one time last year where almost every single one of us got a fine for cleanliness violations. It was odd. This time there were only 13 fines, so it’s good to know that everyone is upholding the standards of cleanliness and health. I hope it continues this way for this year.”

Municipality regulations also stress periodic maintenance programmes for equipment, fittings and chairs so they remain in good order.

Towels and napkins should be collected and put aside for washing and ironing. Special emphasis was made on not reusing paper neck strips.