Some counties had no Covid-19 pass compliance checks since rules lifted

Philip Ryan

The Health and Safety Authority (HSA) has carried out no inspections of hospitality businesses in some counties and as little as two or three in others in the weeks since restrictions on licensing hours were lifted.

New figures show HSA inspectors carried out only two checks of businesses providing indoor service between October 22 and November 5.

Only three hospitality businesses in Wicklow were checked in the same period and just four in Sligo.

There were five checks on restaurants, bars and nightclubs in Kerry and six in Laois.

The highest number of checks was in Dublin (40) followed by Cork (35), Waterford (25), Galway (17), Limerick (16) and Kilkenny (15).

There were no checks in 10 counties during this time, including Louth, Monaghan, Roscommon, Leitrim, Tipperary and Wexford.

In total, there have been 223 inspections by the HSA during this period, with 96pc of businesses found to be in compliance with the Government’s rules on indoor dining. which include the need to produce a Covid pass for entry.

The HSA found 4pc of businesses checked were not compliant with the rules while a further 22pc were required to take additional measures to ensure they were in line with the rules.

The HSE also carries out inspections of the hospitality industry and its latest figures show there have been 13,538 inspections.

However, more than a third of businesses visited by environmental health officers were either closed or were not providing indoor dining.

The figures show there were 8,601 compliance checks on businesses providing indoor service with 70pc found to be compliant with the rules for the industry.

The HSE inspectors found 327 businesses to be non-compliant during inspections between July and November 15. A business in Galway was forced to close following a HSE inspection.

The information supplied to Labour Party TD Ged Nash through a parliamentary question show more than a quarter (2,299) of businesses inspected were not fully compliant and had to introduce new measures to come in line.

Mr Nash said the figures “do not make for good reading” and added that he was concerned there had been no HSA checks in the north east of the country during the period.

He said it was “quite staggering” only one business was forced to close despite 30pc of those checked by the HSE found to be either not compliant or not fully compliant.

“It needs to be clear to businesses that there will be repercussions from the enforcement agencies if they choose not to be compliant,” Mr Nash said.

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