Pro jet-ski rider faces disciplinary action after quarantine breach

Pro rider Vanjae “VJ” Ramgeet faces disciplinary action after girlfriend allegedly breaches quarantine. Photo: Vanjae Ramgeet Facebook

Local professional jet-ski rider Vanjae ‘VJ’ Ramgeet will be penalised following an alleged quarantine breach by his girlfriend on Sunday, the Cayman Islands Watercraft Association announced Monday.

In a brief statement on the incident, the association said a board meeting will be held to determine the appropriate disciplinary action that will be taken against Ramgeet.

It identified Ramgeet’s girlfriend Skylar Mack, the daughter of international rider Dennis Mack, as the individual who allegedly left quarantine on Sunday to attend a Watercraft Association-sanctioned race event in which Ramgeet was competing.

Travel Cayman, in a statement Sunday night, announced that the breach was reported to the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service. The traveller was detained by police under the Public Health Law and moved to a government facility, under 24-hour security, at the suspect’s expense.

A file will be sent to the Office of the Director of Public Prosecution for a decision. Mack is in 14-day quarantine, as is required upon entry into the Cayman Islands.

Last week, a couple was fined $1,000 each after pleading guilty to breaching quarantine-in-residence protocols. They have since departed Cayman and have been banned from returning to the islands while COVID-19 measures remain in place.

Three other suspected breaches of quarantine remain under investigation. There has been no further update on those cases which were announced by authorities last week.

The Watercraft Association was alerted by members of the public of the possible breach, it said in the statement issued Monday, and “immediately alerted the authorities to confirm the suspicions and the matter was dealt with by the RCIPS and the Public Health Department”.

The association said it is assisting authorities with their enquiries.

Watercraft Association president Gary Whittaker stressed the importance the organisation places on public safety.

“I would like to make it abundantly clear to our riders, officials and the general public who were in attendance that safety is always the number one priority at our events, regardless of whether it’s on the water or on-land,” he said in the statement.

Christopher Bodden, the association’s head of fundraising, apologised to sponsors who came on board for the final race of what has been a very short season.

“[I] reassure you that we take the safety of everyone, including the reputation of our sponsors very seriously,” he said in the statement.

The association has asked that any person who believes that they may have had contact with Mack to contact the Public Health Department and follow their guidelines.

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  1. Disrespect of our laws intentionally are not acceptable. I don’t think home isolation should be stopped, however, violators should be required to cover all expenses incurrred by The Government relating to the breach. i.e. time used to do contact tracing, swabbing etc.

  2. 4 weeks in jail to make up for the 2 weeks that they couldn’t stay in quarantine is a fair punishment plus money. There seems to be something wrong with the wrist bands if someone can leave there condo and it does not alert a warning somewhere. As far as not letting people quarantine at home I would not have come if that was the case and my wife and I have spent a ton of money already in less than 2 weeks out of quarantine

  3. I am continually dismayed by people who disregard the safety of others. We saw it in the US with many not wearing masks or social distancing….and look at the results! Me and my family are currently in quarantine (day8!). We are very appreciative of the CI government allowing us to quarantine at home and after quarantine we are looking forward to being in a safe community with more normalcy than we have experienced abroad. I say the steeper the penalty the better, for breaches. Re the monitoring devices, there have been some technical issues, but overall I think it’s a good system and realize there are always glitches in technology.

  4. There is no question that effective quarantine is crucial to combating the virus until vaccines are fully available and violators should be appropriately punished. I also believe that property owners should continue to be able to utilize their own property for the quarantine subject to the existing restrictions. I also believe, however, that government should reconsider the length of the quarantine, especially in light of the recent advisory that 8 to 10 days are sufficient to identify an infection with appropriate testing. Cayman needs to bring back travelers to support the economy and 14 days in quarantine is a significant detriment. As has already been said, we are missing out in a lot of spending by erecting unnecessary barriers to visitors.