BVI News

Two dozen bars, nightclubs breach health protocols after reopening

Chief Environmental Health Officer Lionel Michael said health officials had to return to the proverbial drawing board after patrons at 25 bars and nightclubs failed to comply with social distancing guidelines when they reopened last weekend.

In an interview with BVI News, Michael said some of these establishments failed to also implement hygiene protocols and use the required personal protective equipment (PPE) needed to stave off any spread of the coronavirus.

“The bars were open because they met the guidelines to open but having opened, a lot of people flout the guidelines — especially the public. They derogated from the guidelines that were put in place in order to open,” he stated.

As a result, a meeting was held on Tuesday with more than 60 stakeholders within the bar & nightclubs sector to discuss how to improve and maintain the guidelines that were implemented prior to reopening.

Michael stated that going forward, the existing guidelines have been amended to give patrons equal responsibility when they go to these establishments.

He explained: “The guidelines are putting all emphasis on the bar operators and managers, and none on the public. And so, that is something that we have to plug and we have addressed it. We are going to send out modified and improved guidelines.”


The Chief Environmental Health Officer said if these establishments fail to comply, his department, the police, and the Social Distancing Task Force have the authority to “stop their operation”. 

“We can put a temporary halt to the operation, talk to people and tell them to stop. Depending on what the response is, they can continue [if they] observe the social distancing, the hand hygiene and the PPE. If they fail to comply, the police can ask them to cease operations permanently for that night or weekend, and then we go back to the drawing board and find out what problem they have in enforcing these things,” Michael said.

“We don’t want to threaten the bar managers and operators and tell them we want to shut them down, but at the same time we are here to protect public health, and we will do what we have to do to protect their business,” he added.

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  1. funny says:

    Protecting us from what? Mental health? Well being? Starvation? Domestic Violence? Boredom? Covid-19 no active cases for more than the incubation period and everyone that came into contact with carriers were screened so no asymptamatic carriers either.

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    • @ funny says:

      What kind of nonsensical comment is this???? Do you not understand what asymptomatic means?

      Please look up information before you post.

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  2. What did you all expect says:

    What did you all expect to happen. Where in a night club would persons practice social distancing? Where in a strip club would they practice social distancing?

    The curfew needs to go back to 7p.m. When it was 7p.m. persons where pushing their luck until about 10p.m. before they got off the road. Now that it’s 10 p.m. they pushing it until about midnight.

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    • Agree says:

      These are my sentiments exactly. I think we were too quick to put the curfew to 10:00 or maybe bars and clubs close at 7:00 pm. Even the beaches curfew. is being violated. We are a lawless society.

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  3. schemers says:

    The Covid lock-in was a global sham. You can’t hide from a virus and ruining the economy didn’t solve it.
    You are no more likely to get a virus at church or the beach than you are at a bar or food shop.

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    • Facts says:

      I observed it last mask and no distance at all

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    • News says:

      The Covid was a global scam from the big pharma companies. Most everything coming from the world healthcare organization is a lie. In the US there are protesters rioters gathering by the 1000’s with no spikes in cases related to the covid. True death rates are no different then the flue. There is medicines that re leave symptoms in 1 day. some Dr have had a 100% cure rates with drugs that have been around for 60 years but big pharma Dr say there’s not enough research…HA! 15 years ago health and infection control came out when Sars ie covid started to make its round said these drugs combat it successfully. I love the BVI such wonderful people there and hope to see you soon.

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  4. ?? says:

    What else do you expect to happen? Have you ever seen somebody drink through a mask before? People go to bars to socialize (drink, dance, have fun) A bar is not a restaurant. No one can social distance in a bar. It is a bar. Even if the stools are 6 ft apart, patrons are going to pull them together, because IT IS A BAR. Who going dance 6 ft apart in a 24 ft space?
    The bar is in the bar and not in the street. The guys are glad to get out the house at any cost. Once they are open you will not get it under control. The managers are there to collect their money and make sure they have liquor to sell, clean up and go home until opening time, and we do it all over again. Stop making a mockery

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    • YES says:

      THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I don’t know what the issue is. If they don’t want bars open just leave them closed, but why make businesses spend money to reopen and putting all these restrictions!

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  5. Wow says:

    The essence of any nightlife goes against all the COVID precautions so what’s the use? People go out to a bar or club to socialize with friends/family/co-workers. This will be interesting going forward because I don’t see how you can enjoy yourself at a bar/club with your friends with everyone 6ft apart, with masks on (masks in a bar when drinking? WTF?). I wonder when people will wake up and realize that it’s one thing to take precautions, practice proper hygiene etc. but when will enough be enough with these draconian measures?

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  6. ? says:

    How do you go to a bar or nightclub with a mask on? Or even a restaurant? How do you hold a proper conversation? How do you eat? Drink? Are we going to start using common sense around here or fear mongering is just too hard to resist?

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  7. thoughtful sailor says:

    Even though we have not had any cases for a good while, we are also now letting in a whole group of people. We are depending upon them and their families to uphold quarantine, and, of course, they probably all think they are Covid free, like many others have. That’s why we need to stay observant of the rules.

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    • LC says:

      I thought the new people were quarantined 14 days–so anyone at the bars/restaurants are covid free on a covid free island. Why do you need restrictions if island is covid free?

    • BVI says:

      @thoughtful sailor: The group of people they are letting in are born BVIslanders who have Constitutional right to be allowed into their own country. Keep messing with people constitutional rights.

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  8. Eagle eye says:

    You is health officer and can’t tell people the effects of wearing these mask yet.people have to live as people and not like trees that stays put while we walk around.we need to communicate because we cannot trust y’all sell out leadership in the Caribbean and else where.take off that tie and put on common sense.

  9. Fishing says:

    It concerns me at the fishermen depo that there are large crowds buying fish and not following the distancing protocal. I might be considered that the fishermen need deliver their catch and not have persons gather at the depo.

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  10. No nonsense says:

    I wonder who approve the bar at Smugglers Cove??

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  11. Zagred Smith says:

    Covid is no worse than the flu, stop being sheep and think for yourselves

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  12. Observe says:

    The amount of young people (teenagers/early twenties) that frequent these bars/clubs is a sad sign for this territory. What young people these days call fun is drinking themselves every weekend to alcoholism; smoking every opportunity they get slowing becoming drug addicts; indulging in vulgar language and lewd behaviors; listening to types music that speaks of violence and degrading women. On the other hand, Bar and club owners don’t seem to care who is affected, once they make money. Once people are making money, there’s no regard for others. If “blind eyes” continue to ignore this developing social problem, all I can say is that God Almighty have mercy on us.

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  13. Struggling Man says:

    Sorry to say before Covid-19 some bars in SCB did not even have running water in their bathrooms……..just a 55 gal drum and a bucket to dip to flush………no running water or paper towel at the wash hand basin !!!!!!!!

  14. Mandrill says:

    There are laundries with no toilet paper in their rest rooms.

  15. Norris Turnbull says:

    The Ignorant lot at it again.

  16. Txcatsailor01 says:

    It’s ashame what the world has bought into this global scam to control and lock down billions of people. It amazes me that no one is questioning that ALL the other death rates have plumeted, BUT COVID has spiked.
    I have been working the entire time. I don’t know a single person that has been affected by this “flu”.
    I guess the BVI will be wondering in the future how they could have been so gullible to self ruin their own economy.
    The government will eventually run out of money to keep handing out. And, pandemic or not, you will be left to your own devices to recover. I hope you figure this out sooner rather than later!

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