Who ensures compliance with COVID-19 rules?

A spokeswoman explains the role of the state fire marshal’s office and how it handles non-compliance
Louisiana uses education, motivation to gain compliance with COVID-19 restrictions
Louisiana uses education, motivation to gain compliance with COVID-19 restrictions
Updated: Jan. 13, 2021 at 7:15 PM CST
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(KSLA) — So who enforces COVID-19 restrictions?

Rules that govern what businesses and individuals can do during the ongoing pandemic change with each phase of reopening the economy.

Requirements like keeping patrons at least 6 feet apart.

And limiting the number of people in an establishment to 50% or 75% of capacity.

And aren’t those workers and guests supposed to be wearing masks or some other type of face covering?

Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards repeatedly has said “we’re not going to enforce our way out of this pandemic.”

KSLA News 12′s Destinee Patterson set out to learn who’s monitoring compliance and got some answers from the Louisiana fire marshal’s office.

A spokeswoman explains her office’s role and how it handles non-compliance.

“If we’re talking about a bar that has been found to be intentionally noncompliant, ATC can use the remedies they have at their exposure, which include permit suspension and revocation,” Ashley Rodrigue said.

The state health department also checks in on businesses and has come across instances of restaurants refusing to comply, she added. “They have gone about following their own protocols.”

Here are 11 things deputy fire marshals must check for during a courtesy visit:

  1. 6-feet minimum social distancing is maintained between groups or individuals
  2. Tables are spaced appropriately
  3. Waiting spaces or lobbies are not being occupied inappropriately
  4. Groups do not exceed 10 persons
  5. Crowd manager is controlling occupancy
  6. Exterior queuing, stanchions or other methods of control do not block exits
  7. Employees are utilizing PPE face coverings
  8. Servers are washing their hands and/or sanitizing as often as necessary to prevent cross contamination
  9. Approved sanitizing solution is being used
  10. Tables, chairs and seats are cleaned between each customer seating
  11. Closed as a prohibited business and not operating prohibited activities (like live music)

Law officers also can play a role.

“There are citations that are available to be written by any law enforcement agency out there, per how the proclamation is written,” Rodrigue explained. “It’s a law, the governor’s order. And those are the options that are out there.”

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