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Police Travel Checks Between Tiers ‘Not Enforceable’

Published on: 21 Dec, 2020
Updated on: 21 Dec, 2020

Godalming-bound cars cross the Tier 4/Tier 2 boundary on the A3001. A similar amount of traffic was entering northwards into Guildford.

By Martin Giles

Road traffic was flowing normally in and out of Tier 4 Guildford borough from Tier 2 Waverley without apparent reduction this morning (December 21).

On three main road crossing-points, the A281 at Bramley, the A3001 south of Peasmarsh and the A3 by Compton, traffic was moving north and south at a steady rate.

The A3 looking south, close to the borough boundary (which is by Eashing) had a constant flow of traffic in both directions.

Although Transport Secretary Grant Shapps had warned extra police are being deployed across Tier 4 in London and the South East to ensure only essential travel, not a single police vehicle was seen.

Mr Shapps said it was “incredibly important” people followed guidance, stayed at home and did not try to travel. “If you are in Tier 4, the law means you must stay at home and you cannot stay overnight away from home,” he added. “Across the rest of the country, you must stay local.”

But numerous national media reports dismiss the new travel restrictions. Ken Marsh, chair of the Met Police Federation, told the Metro: “I would accept there is legislation in place but as a police officer who has been doing the job for a long time, it’s not enforceable.

“Your functionality to perform your duty is nigh on impossible if they don’t tell you the truth. If they think they are going to get a fine, they won’t tell you the truth.”

David Munro

The Dragon asked if Surrey Police will prevent, limit or check movement between the rest of Surrey and Waverley and other county areas where infection rates can have greater variance than between the boroughs of Guildford and Mole Valley and Waverley.

Police and Crime Commissioner David Munro said: “I fear the new restrictions announced are necessary. Surrey Police will continue to Engage, Explain, Encourage and Enforce to keep us all safe.”

And a similar story at the borough boundary on A281 at the edge of Bramley.

That there will be no change of tactics seemed to be confirmed by a spokesperson for Surrey Police who said: “Our officers will continue to engage with our local communities using our well-established policing approach. However, in exceptional cases, and only as a last resort and where people show a blatant disregard for the rules, we will take enforcement action.”

“These restrictions have been put in place to keep people safe. But we acknowledge this is hard to hear and many across Surrey will have their Christmas plans significantly changed after an already difficult year.

“This is a challenging and unprecedented time and everyone is doing their best to adapt and follow the rules in place for everyone’s safety, and we are confident the high levels of compliancy will continue.”

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test 7 Responses to Police Travel Checks Between Tiers ‘Not Enforceable’

  1. Paul Robinson Reply

    December 21, 2020 at 6:52 pm

    After coming down with a fever on Saturday afternoon, yesterday morning I used Test & Trace app to see if I needed at test. It said I did and offered me booking slots in High Wycombe, Bognor Regis and Winchester. There were other locations on offer but they were even further away.

    What is the point of telling people not to travel when the testing sites are so far away?

  2. Jim Allen Reply

    December 21, 2020 at 7:45 pm

    A couple of centuries ago medicine was impotent against plague the only way to escape infection was to avoid contact with infected persons and contaminated objects. Thus, some city-states prevented strangers from entering their cities, particularly, merchants, minority groups, or anyone showing symptoms.

    A sanitary cordon, not to be broken on pain of death, was imposed by armed guards along transit routes and at access points to cities. Implementation of these measures required rapid, firm action by authorities, including prompt mobilization of repressive police forces. A rigid separation between healthy and infected persons was initially accomplished through the use of makeshift camps.

    How the world has not changed.

  3. Helen Avery Reply

    December 22, 2020 at 11:20 am

    One wonders how Yorkshire Police are allowed to issue fines for people travelling across tiers to a different tier, in that case to enter pubs, but Surrey Police say they are unable or not allowed to do this.

  4. John Lomas Reply

    December 22, 2020 at 12:32 pm

    Travel in or out for work if needed, but don’t stay overnight in Tier 4.
    How does that work for night-shift workers?

    • Adam Aaronson Reply

      December 23, 2020 at 9:41 am

      “You are allowed to stay overnight away from your home if you: …require accommodation for work purposes or to provide voluntary services…”

      Difficult to find as it is buried in the guidance.

      https://www.gov.uk/guidance/tier-4-stay-at-home#going-to-work

      “Avoid the complicated and keep it simple” is not government policy.

  5. Maurice Bethell Reply

    December 22, 2020 at 6:52 pm

    I believe that these regulations are totally unenforceable and those making them have no concept of policing in this day and age.

  6. Dave Middleton Reply

    December 23, 2020 at 11:38 am

    One also wonders, just how long ago the borough boundary sign in the first photograph, was last cleaned.

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