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Police thank public for playing their part as tourism industry reopens

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Continue to adhere to Government guidance

Devon and Cornwall Police have thanked the public for playing their part as the tourism and hospitality industry began to reopen over the weekend.

The force saw an influx of visitors and local people utilising the amenities as they opened their doors for the first time in a number of months.

Assistant Chief Constable Jim Pearce said: “As we had anticipated it was a busy weekend but the vast majority of people did continue to adhere to Government guidance, played their part and to them I must say thank you.

“In the lead up to the 4th July we had worked closely with licensees, emergency services and other partner agencies in anticipation of an increase in demand particularly during the reopening of the night time economy. Whilst we did see an increase in volume of people and of incidents in comparison the past few weeks and months, overall the demand was in line with that we would expect to see on a Saturday night at this time of year.

“The majority of licensed premises had worked hard to ensure that venues were compliant with COVID restrictions and could open safely and as such only a handful of sites across Devon and Cornwall experienced disruption. Police did not have to enforce closure on any venues across the force on Saturday but were engaged with licensees and provided support where needed.”

Following months of limited tourism, it was key that that industry should be able to open their businesses again and for us all to be able to welcome back visitors to our region but we were clear that this needed to be done safely and respectfully.

By 9am on Saturday the M5 at Exeter was at a stand-still however this soon cleared and there were no significant issues reported on the roads.

On Saturday the force received 862 999 phone calls and 820 non-emergency calls via the 101 service. On Sunday 804 999 calls were made and 792 non-emergency 101 calls. These figures are for all reported incidents, not just anti-social behaviour and drink related disorder. The figures are in line with what we would expect to see on a busy summer weekend.

ACC Pearce continued: “A number of vehicles have been seized across the force since the beginning of COVID lockdown for being driven with no insurance. We are continuing to see an increased number of these incidents and whilst we’re aware that some people won’t have been behind the wheel for many months it is crucial that you ensure your vehicle is road worthy before starting your journey including things such as insurance policies and driving licenses. For those travelling with items such as surf boards, roof racks and bicycles, please ensure that these items are safely secured to your vehicle.

 “If you are coming to Devon, Cornwall, Torbay, Plymouth or the Isles of Scilly, we welcome you, but please remember that COVID has not gone away.

“We must continue to observe social distancing and everyone must play there part to prevent the virus spreading.

“Please continue to play your part and behave in a way that respects our communities, supports the local economy, but ultimately keep you and others safe.”


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