Fines Quadruple for Coronavirus Violations

YERUSHALAYIM -
Israeli police at a roadblock in Yerushalayim. (Olivier Fitoussi/Flash90)

Israeli police have stepped up enforcement of Health Ministry regulations amid a worrying uptick in coronavirus infections.

There were 381 cases on Wednesday in which police handed out fines for not wearing masks, four times as many as any single day last week, according to Channel 12.

Police have also fined more businesses who were not in compliance with the rules.

The fine for not wearing a mask in public is 200 shekels ($60).

It was also reported on Wednesday that a media personality who cursed a police officer last year for giving her a 1,000-shekel fine for using a phone while driving was ordered by a Petach Tikva court to pay 25,000 shekels to the offended officer, 400 for the prosecuting attorney and lawyer’s fees of 4,388 shekels.

Meanwhile, a Health Ministry update on Tuesday night said there were 175 new coronavirus cases confirmed in the past 24 hours.

The number of active cases stands at 2,869. Thirty-one are in serious condition, including 22 on ventilators. Another 42 are in moderate condition and the rest are displaying mild symptoms.

The ministry says 14,817 tests were conducted on Tuesday. No additional deaths are reported Boruch Hashem, so the toll remained at 299.

In the school system, coronavirus continues to spread. The Education Ministry said Wednesday that dozens more students and teachers have been diagnosed with the coronavirus, upping the number of cases in the school system to 428.

Additionally, 1,909 children and staff at educational facilities have gone into isolation since Tuesday evening, taking the total number to 23,786 currently in quarantine, Hebrew media reported.

Several more educational institutions have been closed, the ministry said, taking the total to 139.

Channel 12 reported that crowded conditions at the Bet Lechem checkpoint 300, as Palestinian workers line up to enter Israel, are raising the risk of infection. Social distancing and mask-wearing is not being practiced at the site, it said.