Multiple NFL teams penalized with $250,000 in fines due to coaches not wearing masks at games
The NFL has penalized the Seattle Seahawks, the Denver Broncos and the San Francisco 49ers with $250,000 in fines each due to their coaches not wearing COVID-appropriate face coverings at recent games, CNN reports.
The unmasked coaches include Seattle's Pete Carroll, Denver's Vic Fangio and San Francisco's Kyle Shanahan, and CNN says they were each fined $100,000.
The news site goes on to explain that all NFL coaches were warned that such fines would be levied against those who refused to wear masks during games in a September memo issued by the League's executive Vice President of football operations, Troy Vincent.
The notice said, in part, "We must remain vigilant and disciplined in following the processes and protocols put in place by not only the league, union and clubs, but also by state and local governments. The NFL-NFLPA Game Day Protocol, which reflects the advice of infectious disease experts, club medical staffs and local and state governmental regulations requires all individuals with bench area access (including coaches and members of the club medical staff) to wear face coverings at all times."
Despite the written warning, during Monday night's game in Las Vegas, both Raiders head coach Jon Gruden and Saints head coach Sean Payton were not wearing masks at all times during the games, this even though Payton is one of many NFL members who previously caught and survived novel coronavirus earlier this year.
Of course, the decision to forgo wearing a mask during certain social events is not isolated to the three NFL coaches who've been fined. A recent online poll referenced in an August WebMD article revealed that about nine in 10 Americans said they are knowledgeable about mask-wearing and that they sometimes, often or always wear a mask when they leave their home and are unable to social distance.
While this poll indicates the vast majority of US residents understand and follow the CDC's instructions on masking up until the pandemic passes, it also illustrates the fact that a minority of citizens continue to either misunderstand or refuse to acknowledge the importance of wearing face coverings during the current health crisis.
This concerns health experts. Dr. Amesh Adalja, a senior scholar with the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, in Baltimore, said, "The survey findings underscore the need for much better information on the use of face coverings and the evidence supporting them. It is understandable that the general public is going to have a suboptimal understanding of face coverings given the mixed messaging that has been occurring."
On its website, the CDC explains that the virus that causes COVID-19 spreads very easily and sustainably between people. Information from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic suggests it's spreading more efficiently than influenza, but not as efficiently as measles, which is highly contagious. Essentially, the more closely a person interacts with others and the longer that interaction, the higher the risk of COVID-19 spread.
It is spread via person-to-person in the following ways:
-Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
-Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or talks.
-These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.
-COVID-19 may be spread by people who are not showing symptoms.
That said, in addition to regular hand washing and social distancing, the CDC emphasizes that by choosing to wear a mask while around others one can protect, not only themselves but all who they come in contact with.
Click here for more information from the CDC pertaining to masks.