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Operation Navigation: Another 20 pubs suspected of breaching Covid-19 restrictions

A total of 59 licenced premises have been caught allegedly breaching regulations since 3 July.

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GARDAÍ HAVE REPORTED that an additional 20 pubs were found to be breaching Covid-19 restrictions last week.

This brings the total number of premises in breach of the rules to 59 since the Gardaí began Operation Navigation on 3 July.

A majority of these breaches are down to alcohol being consumed, but no evidence of food being served on the premises, alongside a lack of receipts to prove that food is being sold.

According to the Gardaí, the vast majority of pubs and restaurants are following the guidelines.

From 6 to 12 July, 11 premises were suspected to be in breach of the restrictions, while on the weekend of 3 to 5 July, 26 premises were suspected of breaching the restrictions.

An additional two cases have also been recorded as part of previous weeks’ figures, due to the mechanism in which they are reported.

Where breaches are found and if the business does not comply with the regulations, a file is submitted to the Director of Public Prosecutions for directions as to how to respond.

Deputy Commissioner, Policing and Security, John Twomey said that the Gardaí welcome the high level of compliance with the restrictions.

“An Garda Síochána continue to carry out intensive visits of licensed premises which have opened for business in accordance with Covid-19 Public Health Regulations. An Garda Síochána continues to see a high level of compliance. This is welcome.

The COVID-19 Pandemic remains a real and present public health crisis and An Garda Síochána continues to appeal to all citizens, businesses and organisations to comply with Public Health Guidelines and Regulations in order to continue to save lives.

Currently, Phase Three reopening plans only allow for pubs and restaurants serving a €9 meal to reopen. Customers can only stay on the premises for 105 minutes before they have to leave.

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While all pubs were originally scheduled to reopen on 20 July, this was recently pushed back by the government to 10 August.

These restrictions were upheld due to worries from the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET), as cases of Covid-19 had begun to rise again.

Speaking in the Dáil recently, Tánaiste Leo Varadkar said that the earliest pubs will be able to open is 10 August, but it could be pushed back depending on the spread of Covid-19.

“We’re not saying they will open on the 10th of August – we are saying they will open no sooner than the 10th of August,” said Varadkar.

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