JEDDAH: An updated list of fines for breaking coronavirus disease (COVID-19) protocols, including penalties for social gatherings as Eid celebrations approach, were announced by the Saudi Ministry of Interior on Tuesday.
The new list follows a May 7, 2020 announcement on regulations to limit gatherings that contribute to the spread of the virus.
Those responsible for gatherings and owners of facilities will be fined for the following:
Gatherings beyond the numbers specified by authorities in a single or specific space without a residential relation inside houses, farms and the like will be fined SR10,000 ($2,700).
A fine of SR15,000 for family gatherings beyond the numbers specified in one space inside homes, farms, camps, chalets, or open areas for people living in the same neighborhood.
Another fine of SR40,000 for gatherings for social purposes such as funerals, parties and the like, exceeding the specified numbers.
Any group of workers without residential relation in homes, buildings under construction, farms and the like, other than their homes, consisting of five people or more in one specific space results in a fine of SR50,000.
Private sector establishments/facilites violating precautionary measures will be fined according to the cases stipulated in those preventive procedures and measures announced by the competent authority.
Violations include inviting people and allowing gatherings, failure to check the health status of individuals through the designated apps, allowing the entry of confirmed cases, failure to carry out check-ups for workers, letting people inside the facility without a medical or cloth mask, absence of sterilizers, neglecting temperatures check ups at the entrances to malls and commercial centers, and failure to carry out disinfection works for carts and shopping baskets after each use.
The person responsible for the facility will be penalized according to the size of the facility and number of employees as follows: Very small facilities with one to five workers will be closed for five days and fined SR10,000.
A small establishment with between six and 49 workers will be closed for five days and fined SR20,000, while a medium one with 50-249 workers will be closed for five days and fined SR50,000.
Large facilities with 250 workers or more will be fined SR100,000 with a five-day closure.
On repeating the offense, the person in charge of the facility will be referred to Bureau of Investigation and Public Prosecution to consider a prison sentence.
Restaurants and cafes are excluded from the closing periods specified above, and will only be closed for 24 hours for the first time, 48 hours for the second time, a week for the third time, two weeks for the fourth time, and a month for the fifth time or more.
Individual violators will be fined a SR1,000. The penalty can be doubled and may reach SR100,000 on repetition.
Violations include refusing temperature check-ups at entrances, not wearing masks, non-adherence to social distancing, and withholding information of health status through the Tawakkalna app.
Those entering the Grand Mosque for prayer without a permit will be fined SR1,000.
Any person attending the gatherings mentioned above will also be fined SR5,000 for the first time, and the amount may double and reach SR100,000 upon repetition in addition to referral to the Bureau of Investigation and Public Prosecution to consider a prison sentence.
Saudi Arabia reported 13 more COVID-19-related deaths on Tuesday. The death toll now stands at 7,098.
The health ministry reported 999 new cases, meaning that 428,369 people have now contracted the disease. There are 9,169 remaining active cases, with 1,358 in a critical condition.
According to the ministry, 352 of the newly recorded cases were in Riyadh, 260 in Makkah, 120 in the Eastern Province and 54 in Madinah.
In addition, 1,286 patients recovered from the disease, bringing the total to 412,102 recoveries.
Saudi Arabia has so far conducted 17,669,879 PCR tests, with 71,792 carried out in the past 24 hours.
Saudis and expats in the Kingdom continue to receive their COVID-19 jabs, with 10,906,361 people inoculated so far.