A pair of Maltese friends who went to Għar Lapsi for a late-night Sunday swim found themselves approached by police with flashlights for not having a mask on one of them… even though they had just stepped out of the water and were chatting at the water’s edge.
“Educational post – always carry a mask with you everywhere, even if you’re going to the middle of nowhere,” Katia Desira jokingly said following the run-in.
Desira and a friend had hit up the popular swimming spot to spend a relaxing evening under the stars. However, it quickly got ruined after police made their way down to them – the only people around – to ask them if they had masks.
“We had just come out of the water and were having a chat, and the police asked if we had a mask and I was obliged to wear it. But my friend didn’t have on him, it was in his car nearby, so he got fined,” she said.
Malta’s health guidelines have recently ramped up in the last few weeks as the country faces a spike in COVID-19 cases. Masks need to be worn in all public places, leading to people reportedly wearing masks while fishing alone in a boat and other peculiar situations.
However, Desira was left wondering whether the pair of them at the beach at night were really what the police needed to focus on. While her friend’s mask was in their car nearby, and she knew that technically the police were in the right, she was left feeling like this wasn’t the best approach to educate people.
“I was shocked and we laughed about it… but at that time, it was kind of insane,” she said, before jokingly ending with a “Domine Dirige Nos” (Lord guide us).
The man in question also spoke out on social media, saying: “My car was a few metres away and I had my mask in there. In the end, although the policeman was technically right, one has to agree that he acted ridiculously. I will be appealing the fine.”
Cover photo: Adrian Cilia