From Devon & Cornwall Police:
Devon & Cornwall Police has asked that people do not make journeys to its force area next weekend which is the Easter Bank Holiday, if they are unnecessary in light of clear government advice on social distancing and unnecessary travel.
This advice has the express aim of slowing the spread of coronavirus, protecting the NHS and ultimately saving lives, and currently is as follows:
- Stay at home
- Only go outside for food, health reasons or work (but only if you cannot work from home)
- If you go out, stay 2 metres (6ft) away from other people at all times
- Wash your hands as soon as you get home
- Do not meet others, even friends or family. You can spread the virus even if you don’t have symptoms.
Devon & Cornwall Police officers, all other blue light and health services and key workers are doing an incredible job in keeping the public safe, but we ask you to consider that increasing the population of our area will place an unreasonable burden on them.
Increasing the number of people in any given area will also of course make it more difficult to observe vital social distancing.
Devon and Cornwall, our Force area which contains many beauty spots and popular beaches, will still be here when the coronavirus outbreak is contained, so please #comebacklater
To keep everyone safe this weekend and the next, Devon & Cornwall Police will continue to engage with the public about whether their travel is necessary and reasonable and encourage them to choose differently for the welfare of themselves and others. Enforcement is a last resort, and so far no penalties have been given under the current conditions.
The public will see a highly visible police presence both in vehicles and foot patrols, proactively policing areas where people may put themselves at risk by not following government advice about travel and social distancing. These areas include main arterial routes into the force area including service and rest areas, minor roads leading to concentrated second home areas, commercial premises and industrial sites, the aforementioned beauty spots and popular beaches and also in urban areas where young people may be tempted to gather and where anti-social behaviour could be an issue.
Officers will check vehicles, but not liveried vehicles such as those working for highways departments, utility distribution networks or food and medical distribution. This is in order to ascertain whether the journey being undertaken is reasonable in supporting the purpose of government advice to protect the NHS and save lives and, as has been said, engage, explain and encourage.
Devon & Cornwall Police has an extensive and constantly updated set of frequently asked questions about coronavirus and the Force’s response, plus other essential information, on its website: www.devon-cornwall.police.uk/advice/covid-19-coronavirus