Public beaches and malls in Ras Al Khaimah to reopen from Thursday

Malls will operate at a reduced capacity while beach-goers must wear masks and follow social distancing

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Shopping malls and public beaches in Ras Al Khaimah have been permitted to reopen from Thursday as Covid-19 restrictions in the emirate are eased.

Beauty salons and barbershops in the emirate will also resume operations with strict safety measures in place to protect customers from the pandemic.

The Ras Al Khaimah Department of Economic Development has unveiled reopening procedures in line with other emirates that have relaxed stay-home orders and lifted curbs on trade and travel to bolster the economy.

Malls will operate from 10am to 8pm at 30 per cent capacity, but will deny entry to visitors aged above 60 or below 12.

Cinemas, gyms, entertainment venues, common seating areas and prayer rooms within malls will remain closed.

RAK Services Department said people visiting beaches should wear masks and gloves, and keep a minimum distance of two meters from one another.

Gatherings of more than five people will not be allowed, even if they belong to a single family. Smoking, campfire and barbecues will be prohibited on the beaches.

Restaurants have also been told to operate at 30 per cent of their capacity, while tables must be spread apart with only four people allowed on one table.

“To ensure the health and safety of shoppers, the department underlined the importance of running health checks on all cleaning and security staff contracted to work at malls,” the department said.

Visitors must wear protective masks and gloves and are encouraged to bring their own bags.

“Car parks must only be operated at 50 per cent capacity and no more than three people should be allowed in a single-vehicle,” the department said.

Valet parking and car wash services remain suspended while disinfection devices and temperature readers will be installed at entrances.

RAS AL KHAIMAH, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. 21 MAY 2020. A tour with RAK Tourism Development Authority inspectors to know more about Hilton Ras Al Khaimah  Resort & Spa’s preventive and hygiene measures as they open up after the hotel lockdown. A table at the beach restaurant is sanitized after each guests to prevent the possible spread of COVID-19. (Photo: Antonie Robertson/The National) Journalist: Ruba Haza. Section: National.
Covid-19 guidelines being enforced at restaurants, malls and public beaches as they open up in Ras Al Khaimah . Antonie Robertson/The National

“Those with a fever exceeding 38 degrees will be asked to leave,” the department said.

Regular sterilisation will take place at malls and outlets, with special emphasis on surfaces which shoppers are most likely to touch, such as handrails on escalators.

Shoppers will be encouraged to use credit or debit cards to pay instead of cash and leave elevators for people with special needs. Only two people are allowed into lifts at a time.

“Marks will be placed on escalators and floors to enforce social distancing. All public touchscreens will be disabled, and a team of paramedics will be available at all times,” the department said.

All stores will test their employees for Covid-19 before reopening the malls and staff will be required to wear masks and gloves and change them regularly.

“Their temperature will be checked every day on arrival, while additional checks will be conducted through the day,” the authority said.

Restaurants must disinfect their facilities on a daily basis, including tables and chairs, after every use.

They must introduce single-use utensils and provide hand sanitisers at payment terminals.

Salons are instructed to offer hair and nail services through appointments but must place separators between the chairs and sterilise dressing equipment regularly.

Men's salons can only give haircuts and no other grooming services, including shaving, are permitted.

“Temperature checks will be carried out on customers, while those suffering from cold or flu symptoms will not be allowed to enter," officials said.

Inspectors will verify compliance with the rules before allowing businesses to reopen and there will be follow-up checks to identify the violators, who will face fines or even closure.

Salons and barber shop services were suspended on April 7 while mall closures were announced on March 25.

The movement of people will be restricted in the emirate from 8pm until 6am to facilitate nightly sanitisation campaign.