The AFL have fined the Adelaide Crows for breaching the league’s COVID-19 Protocols.
This afternoon the AFL issued a statement confirming the $50,000 fine after footage emerged of the Crows not wearing masks on the plane while travelling back to South Australia from Sydney last weekend after their loss to Richmond at Giants Stadium.
“A number of Crows players and officials did not adhere to the applicable rule of wearing a facemask while on a commercial flight from Sydney to Adelaide last weekend,” the statement read.
“The AFL, in conjunction with the club, investigated the matter and determined a number of officials and players did not wear their facemasks properly while on the flight.
“The club has been fined $50,000, with 100 per cent of the sanction to be included in their Football Department Soft Cap.”
An investigation was launched when damning video was leaked overnight. From January it is compulsory for everyone on flights, and at airports to wear a face mask unless eating or drinking.
“First and foremost, we all have a very clear responsibility to ensure we do everything we can to best protect the health and well-being of our family, friends and everyone in the community,” AFL General Counsel Andrew Dillon said.
“The rule here is clear and has been in place for some time and there is simply no excuse for not abiding by it.
“We will not compromise the health and well-being of the community, and remind everyone in the industry – players, coaches, officials and staff – that they have a responsibility to adhere to the rules for the safety of everyone.”
The Crows released a statement of their own after conducting an investigation of their own.
“We are well aware of our responsibilities and the need to adhere to guidance and protocols put in place by the AFL and health authorities,” Crows CEO Tim Silvers said.
“We failed in this area and we would like to apologise to the other passengers on the plane.
“Our Club accepts the AFL’s penalty and from top to bottom owns this error in judgement.
“We were complacent and this matter must serve as a reminder to be vigilant in playing our part to try and limit the spread of COVID-19.
“It is a privilege to be playing games during these challenging times and we acknowledge the government requirement for people to wear facemasks in airports and on all domestic commercial flights.”