Radio 2

Quarantine for 80 Ostend lifeguards and their families

Eighty lifeguards and their families face 14 days of quarantine after Ostend lifeguards attended an end-of-season party that is illegal under current coronavirus restrictions.  Two lifeguards, who attended the party, subsequently tested positive.

It’s a tradition in Ostend that the lifeguards, usually students, who have their hands full marshalling bathers, often unfamiliar with the dangers of the sea, on Ostend beaches all summer, celebrate the end of the season.  This year no parties are allowed, but an event went ahead with all the misery you could expect.

“They came together despite the ban” said Mayor Bart Tommelein.  “There were dozens of lifeguards in a small environment where safe distancing could not be observed.  Beach lifeguards made a tremendous effort this summer to keep the beaches safe in extraordinary circumstances.  It’s a shame and irresponsible that a large group like this ignored the rules.  They endangered their own health but also that of people around them.”

At least 80 youngsters present at the party will have to get tested and they and their entire households will need to quarantine.  A police investigation is underway because flouting corona restrictions can lead to a prosecution.

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