Public urged to continue adhering to lockdown restrictions over Bank Holiday weekend
With another Bank Holiday about to get underway, North Wales Police are once again urging people adhere to the lockdown guidelines by staying home and only travelling when essential.
Officers leading the force’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic say that the majority of people across north Wales are sticking to the measures and it is hoped that this will continue over the long weekend.
However concerns remain over those travelling “totally unreasonable distances” into the area, despite restrictions in Wales remaining different to those in England.
Temporary Assistant Chief Constable Nigel Harrison said: “Thank you for your support over the past eight weeks – the majority of you have been fantastic in staying inside and following the rules. But we need to keep going.
“Everyone must continue to contribute to the national effort to respond to the coronavirus outbreak and I am grateful to the vast majority who have made significant changes to their daily habits and routines.
“You really are playing your part in helping to save lives.
“Restrictions remain more stringent here in Wales. Our tourist attractions, parts of the national park, pubs, restaurants, cafes, caravan, holiday parks and campsites all remain closed. When exercising you must stay local.
“Despite our repeated messages including national media coverage, we’ve continued to see people travelling totally unreasonable distances into north Wales which is extremely disappointing.
“Our focus continues to be to reassure, inform and engage with people so they understand why these restrictions are in place. Teams continue to be out and about in our communities and on the road networks, and will be once again this weekend, ensuring the people are complying with the restrictions.”
North Wales Police are also reminding people that it is not legal to drive to second and holiday homes, and neither is driving to the National Park and other beauty spots to walk or exercise.
T/ACC Harrison said: “Please stay in your primary residence.
“North Wales will still be here once the pandemic is over and we look forward to getting things back to normal and welcoming people back as soon as we can.
“The NHS and other 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.
“Don’t be the selfish one that undoes all the good work that has been done over the last nine weeks this is about making sure loved ones are able to get out and enjoy north Wales once again as soon as possible , the police should not be needed to reinforce common sense.
“We thank you for your continued support and understanding in these exceptional times, and we continue to work hard to make north Wales as safe as possible.”
The Welsh Government has confirmed that from today the maximum penalties for breaching the lockdown will rise.
The existing fines structure, which imposed a £60 fine for a first offence rising to £120 for a second and subsequent offences, will be replaced by a new structure in which the fines double for every offence – rising from £60 to £120 to £1,920 for the sixth offence.
Announcing the changes to the fines structure, First Minister, Mark Drakeford said: “The police have adopted a ‘4Es’ approach to the regulations – they have engaged people, explained what they need to do and encouraged them to comply. But when people haven’t responded, they have used their powers to enforce the regulations.
“Fines are a last resort in the enforcement of the regulations which keep us all safe.
“The evidence from the chief constables and Police and Crime Commissioners shows we need a stronger fines structure to deter that small minority of people who persistently fail to keep to the rules.”
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