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22/09/2021

Gardaí urge public to stay safe and observe Covid restriction advice this weekend

Appeal to drivers to slow down on approach to garda checkpoints

Gardai have advised motorists and members of the public that checkpoints will be in place this weekend.

To date, An Garda Síochána has issued approximately 9,800 Covid-19 fines across the range of all Covid-19 breaches.

As of close of business on February 25, the following number of fines had been issued:

- 7,566 €100 fines for non-essential travel
- 341 €500 fines for non-essential journeys to airports/ports – the total number of €100 and €500 fines for non-essential journeys to airports/ports is 716
- 277 €500 fines for organising a house party and 1,109 €150 fines for attending a house party
- 187 fines of €80 each for not wearing a face covering

An Garda Síochána continues to find groups gathering (house parties, social gatherings, exercise etc.) in breach of regulations.  These are not just breaches of regulations but are a risk to the individuals involved, their families and loved ones, and continue to put everybody’s health and the recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic at risk.  Recent surveys have shown that the majority of people believe that they are doing the right thing, but the reality is that the level of casual contacts remains high. 

An Garda Síochána will be continuing nationwide checkpoints and high visibility patrols at public amenities, parks and beauty spots across the country this weekend in support of public health regulations.

An Garda Síochána is again advising the public of the need to plan their activities over the weekend to take account that people are only allowed to exercise within 5km of their home. People are reminded that the 5km limit includes the distance travelled from their home to a location for exercise. In other words, you can’t travel more than 5km to a location to exercise.

The public should also be aware that if a driver is found to be in breach of the non-essential travel regulations that not only can the driver be fined, but their adult passengers as well. This is also the case for adults in groups undertaking activities such as cycling or walking – every adult in such a group can be fined.

When visiting amenities within 5km of your home please park legally. Illegal parking can hinder access by emergency services and could put lives at risk. As we saw during previous weekends, people who illegally park are at risk of having their cars towed and impounded.

In enforcing these regulations, Gardaí have been using the 4Es approach – engaging, explaining, and encouraging with enforcement a last resort.

An Garda Síochána continues to remind persons subject to domestic violence - Travel restrictions DO NOT APPLY in the case of domestic violence or to escape a risk of harm, whether to the person or to another person.

An Garda Síochána continues to appeal to any person who may have been the victim of an incident of sexual or domestic crime irrespective of whether you may have been in breach of any public health regulations, for instance by attending a house party, An Garda Síochána is here to assist and support you, please report all such incidents.

Deputy Commissioner, Policing and Security, John Twomey said, "The vast majority of people are complying with the public health regulations. This is vital in bringing down the COVID-19 infection rate. We know it has meant major sacrifices for people and we thank them for their great efforts.

"The best way of keeping safe this weekend is to stay home. If you are going out, please stay within your 5km, limit your contacts with others, maintain social distancing, and regularly wash your hands.

"We all have a role to play in tackling the spread of COVID-19. This is an individual and collective responsibility. Unfortunately, there appears to be some people who don’t believe it is their responsibility. Having such an attitude puts themselves, their loved ones and anyone they come into contact with at risk of getting a virus that has killed more than 4,000 of our fellow citizens.”

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