FEHD continues to take stringent enforcement actions relating to anti-epidemic regulations
A total of 45 catering premises including bars/pubs and 38 other premises, including 12 karaoke establishments and 26 nightclubs, were inspected by the FEHD and the Police during the joint operations in the last three days. Also, 1 591 catering premises including bars/pubs and 421 other premises were inspected by the FEHD on its own. Among these, the FEHD initiated procedures on prosecution against two operators of karaoke establishments/nightclubs for breaching the directions on scheduled premises made under the Regulation for failing to ensure that all customers or staff members have received the first dose of COVID-19 vaccine. The two premises have to take, on the subsequent day of being identified by the enforcement officers, corresponding measures for reducing the risk of transmission (i.e. closure of the premises) for a period of 14 days.
In addition, the FEHD also initiated procedures on prosecution against seven catering business operators suspected of breaching the requirements made under the Regulation (these include distancing or partitioning between tables, mask wearing, more than four persons allowed to be seated together at one table in Type B catering premises and failing to ensure that all staff members involved in the operation of the business on the premises have received the first dose of COVID-19 vaccine and have kept the vaccination record as proof of vaccination in Type C catering premises). Since the relevant requirements or restrictions were not adopted, the premises have to take, on the subsequent day of being identified by the enforcement officers, corresponding measures for reducing the risk of transmission (i.e. selling or supplying food or drink for consumption on the premises must be ceased from 6pm to 4.59am of the subsequent day, and no more than two persons may be seated together at one table) for a period of three days (for two cases), seven days (for four cases) and 14 days (for one case).
Three persons (one customer and two staff members) who were present at the scheduled premises and did not comply with the directions of the Regulations (including having received the first COVID-19 vaccine dose before patronising karaoke establishments or night establishments/night clubs and staff members involved in the operation of the premises) were suspected of breaching the Regulation and were issued with fixed penalty notices.
The FEHD spokesman stressed that persons who are present at any premises of a catering business or any scheduled premises must comply with directions applicable to them. Non-compliance with the relevant directions would be an offence and offenders are subject to a maximum fine of $10,000. The liability may be discharged by paying a fixed penalty of $5,000. The directions include requiring customers patronising bars/pubs, karaoke establishments or night establishments/night clubs to have received the first COVID-19 vaccine dose.
For customers in breach of the requirement on the maximum number of persons per table within catering premises, they are liable to a fixed penalty of $5,000 for violating Cap. 599G. For customers not wearing a mask when they are eating or drinking not at a table therein or they are not eating or drinking, they are liable to a fixed penalty of $5,000 for contravening the Prevention and Control of Disease (Wearing of Mask) Regulation (Cap. 599I).
If a person responsible for carrying on a catering business or scheduled premises contravenes the regulations under the Regulation, he or she is liable to being prosecuted and, upon conviction, to a maximum fine of $50,000 and imprisonment for six months.
The FEHD will continue to step up law enforcement on all types of premises and inspect staff and customers' records of receiving vaccinations, as well as conduct joint operations with the Police. These will include bars/pubs, karaoke establishments and night establishments/night clubs. Stringent enforcement actions will be taken against offenders.
To minimise the risk of transmission of COVID-19, the spokesman strongly appealed to operators and staff members of all premises as well as members of the public to comply with the relevant regulations on prevention and control of disease in a concerted and persistent manner, and not to defy and break the law.
Ends/Monday, June 21, 2021
Issued at HKT 19:20
Issued at HKT 19:20