House parties, large outdoor gatherings and breaches of travel restrictions have all been the focus of enforcement action by South Wales Police in the last few days.
In line with forces throughout the UK, the force has worked to maintain a consistent approach of policing by consent regardless of which coronavirus restrictions are in place. While the majority continue to do their bit to support the collective effort to slow the spread of the virus, officers have been left with little option but to enforce the regulations on a number of occasions both during and post the firebreak period.
In recent days alone enforcement notices have been given to:
- A family who travelled from Germany to holiday on the Gower. When stopped by officers in their German-registered vehicle, the family initially claimed to be residents in Swansea, before admitting they had in fact travelled during the firebreak period to holiday in south Wales;
- The organiser of a large bonfire and fireworks event in Maesteg. The organiser advertised the event on social media and it was widely attended despite firebreak measures being in place at the time;
- The driver and passenger of a vehicle which had been driven from Birmingham and was stopped by officers in Hirwaun. They told officers they were en route to trade vehicles in Llanelli, despite knowing their local area was subject to an England-wide lockdown and that Wales also has travel restrictions in place;
- The hosts and attendees of two separate house parties in Cathays.
Chief Superintendent Andy Valentine, who’s leading South Wales Police’s response to the pandemic, said: “Even though we have moved out of the two-week firebreak lockdown there are still restrictions that people should adhere to and, as I have done throughout the pandemic, I would urge everyone to continue playing their part by doing the right thing.
“While some restrictions have eased, it is as important as ever that we continue to act responsibly – focussing on what we should do not what we can do – to help slow the spread of the virus here in south Wales, and protect our NHS.
“Our health partners have been clear that indoor transmission remains one of the greatest risks, so while we will continue to work with our communities to help them understand the rules, we will absolutely enforce in those areas where we are seeing blatant or persistent breaches.”