The municipality carried out 10,481 field visits of restaurants in Dubai since May 27 until last week Image Credit: Gulf News

Dubai: Dubai Municipality has ordered the closure of 107 food establishments from May 27 until last week on account of various violations amid the pandemic.

Sultan Al Taher, Manager of Food Inspection Section in the Municipality, said inspectors carried out 10,481 field visits to food establishments in Dubai during the past 75 days, and 107 food establishments were found violating the COVID-19 precautionary measures. They were closed for not adhering to the procedures set by the health authorities to limit the spread of COVID-19.

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“The most prominent violations that were detected were failure to adhere to social distancing, not wearing personal safety equipment such as masks and gloves during food preparation, as well as not using approved sterilisation and disinfection materials,” he said, pointing out that the decision to close the violating establishments is temporary, until the cause of the violation is rectified and its conditions enhanced.

Al Taher added that during their supervisory visits, the inspectors checked the daily follow-up records of the workers’ health, the sterilisation and disinfection operations record, in addition to ensuring that all safety requirements are applied to food during receiving, preparing, storing, displaying at healthy temperatures, and applying hygiene and sterilisation procedures to prevent cross-contamination and pest control.

He pointed out that the municipality checks all food establishments in the emirate according to their various activities, such as restaurants, cafeterias, cafes that offer food, groceries, supermarkets, and bakeries, and also inspects and monitors delivery vehicles, to ensure that they are sterilised, maintain food safety measures after each order and change masks and gloves of delivery workers after every order.

“The inspection teams in the municipality conduct routine inspection visits as well as visits based on consumer complaints, and impose fines according to Local Order No. 11 of 2003 pertaining to public health and community safety in the Emirate of Dubai,” said Al Taher, explaining that the fines vary according to the type of violation, and multiply with frequency.

Overall, the municipality said the percentage of food establishments’ compliance with measures to combat COVID-19 had increased to 99 per cent from 93 per cent.

Dubai Municipality urged all community members to contact its toll-free number 800900, to report any violations of food safety, so that the Municipality will deal with the food outlet immediately.