In order to pull off four events in July, the Abu Dhabi Department of Culture and Tourism are committing to the best health and safety practices to ensure a safe environment on Fight Island.
As DCT explained in a pair of press releases, to ensure the safety of UFC staff, event personnel, Yas Island employees and the wider Abu Dhabi community, all attendees of UFC Fight Island have quarantined for 14 days at Yas Island hotels.
More than 1,500 event personnel and Yas Island employees have been stationed within Yas Island’s ‘safe zone’ to employ strict COVID-19 precautionary measures.
All UAE-based personnel and Yas Island support staff reported to Yas Island hotels in the past few weeks, following a complete and comprehensive sanitation of all hotels.
Following a 14-day hotel quarantine and a negative test result, individuals are now permitted to leave the hotel and move around Yas Island’s safe zone. The zone sits within roughly 11 km on Yas Island and includes the venue, the hotels, the training facilities and the dining establishments. Only UFC athletes and their coaches - who will undertake COVID-19 tests on take-off, landing, 48hrs after arrival and pre-fight, will be permitted to enter the ‘safe zone’ in July - UFC staff and event personnel, along with Yas Island employees will be provided access to the safe zone.
Organised and implemented by the Department of Culture and Tourism - Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi) to navigate the new global health and safety landscape brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, the ‘safe zone’ represents an innovative approach to ensuring the safe return of UFC to Abu Dhabi, and also paves the way for further high-profile events heading for UAE shores later in the year.
The safety measures and processes in place for UFC Fight Island are extensive: all Abu Dhabi-based event staff have been in 14-day hotel room quarantine since June 19 and have all had three COVID-19 tests during this period. While they have been in isolation, a 740-strong crew has been constructing the venue and competition area, which is now complete. The set-up crew has now left the zone, and the area was cordoned off by Abu Dhabi Police with a full sanitization of the zone is now underway, ready for staff to enter.
All bouts will take place at Flash Forum. Innovative ‘mist tunnels’ - 1.5m passageways on entry to the venue - have been added to sanitize everyone entering, with the mist killing 99% of surface bacteria. Sanitization stations are also included in every room, in every venue and communal areas have been removed. There will also be no crowd and masks will be compulsory at all times. The Octagon, which is housed in a state-of-the-art, air-conditioned indoor arena within the zone, will be sanitized between all fights and be subjected to deep cleaning each evening. Another Octagon has also been constructed at Yas Beach for the fighters’ enjoyment, and this will also undergo the same sanitization measures.
In addition to the more than two thousand COVID-19 tests taken over the past week, significant progress has also been made on the event site. A crew of 740 are working with 350 tons of steel and 18km of cable to turn the 640,000sqm area into a venue fit for the famous Octagon, where the best fights in the world will take place this year.
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