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Londoners warned to adhere to pandemic restrictions – or be prepared to pay up

City hall urged pandemic-weary Londoners on Thursday to not forget the restrictions in place to help curb the spread of COVID-19.

“With the stay-at-home order in effect for a number weeks now, our officers will not refrain from issuing fines where violations are observed,” the city’s bylaw boss, Orest Katolyk, said in a statement.

“We are asking Londoners to please continue to follow all regulations in place. These are in place for the safety and well-being of the entire community.”

The reminder comes after a number of people were fined during the last two weekends and a golfer was slapped with an $880 ticket Wednesday for playing on the closed Thames Valley golf course.

Other infractions included a person fined for hosting a gathering, three people fined for attending gatherings, and eight fines issued to businesses that did not adhere to regulations relating curbside pickup, masking, and having a safety plan.

With the weather getting warmer and the days getting longer, the city said it wants to clarify what Londoners can and can’t do outdoors. The city said activities such as walking, running, in-line skating and cycling through city parks are allowed, as well as using park benches, as long as people from different households maintain two metres of distance. Dog parks also are open.

Facilities such as golf courses, soccer pitches, baseball diamonds, tennis and pickleball courts, basketball courts and skate parks remain off-limits. Likewise, people are not allowed to use parks for picnics and are prohibited from gathering at park shelters.

“Those who are not from the same household are required to maintain a physical distance of two metres from others using park spaces. A person living alone is permitted to socialize in-person with one other household,” the city said.

Wearing a mask or face covering is recommended in parks, and masks are mandatory while using park washrooms.

“Now is not the time to take these orders lightly,” the city said.

CORONAVIRUS CASES: THE NUMBERS

(*Figures for Southwestern Ontario as of Thursday, May 6, 2021, at 12 p.m.)

  • Ontario — 483,057 cases
  • London-Middlesex — 10,903 cases, 206 deaths
  • Elgin-Oxford — 3,490 cases, 76 deaths
  • Brant — 2,833 cases, 20 deaths
  • Chatham-Kent — 1,793 cases, 13 deaths
  • Sarnia-Lambton — 3,296 cases, 56 deaths
  • Huron Perth — 1,604 cases, 53 deaths
  • Grey-Bruce — 1,229 cases, 3 deaths
  • Windsor-Essex — 15,676 cases, 414 deaths

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