Gardaí starting house checks to ensure self-quarantine of new arrivals

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Gardaí will be carrying out house checks from this weekend on people who have entered the state to ensure that they are complying with the mandatory self-quarantine.

The house checks are being focused on people who have been reported to An Garda Síochána as not engaging with the Department of Health monitoring process.

To date, detectives in GNIB have already conducted house calls in relation to people who entered the State without the required PCR tests.

Failure to comply with the relevant public health regulation – SI No 44 of 2021 under the Health Act 1947 – is an offence and the passenger may be subject to prosecution,

The punishment for failing to quarantine can be a fine not exceeding €2,500, imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months, or both.

Where Gardaí determine there has been a breach a file will be submitted to the DPP for directions in each case.

Under current restrictions all passengers coming into Ireland must complete a passenger locator form, and have a negative result for COVID-19 from a PCR test carried out in the 72 hours prior to arriving.

People arriving from a designated list of high-risk countries must quarantine at home for a period of 14 days, regardless of whether or not they get a negative result from a second test.

The Dáil has voted in favour of legislation to introduce mandatory hotel quarantine for people arriving from high-risk countries.

Minister for Justice Helen McEntee has said that while Gardaí will be involved in this system in a limited form, it would not be appropriate to station officers at hotels.