Police use number plate recognition cameras to catch drivers flouting lockdown rules

POLICE are using number plate recognation cameras to catch drivers flouting lockdown rules.

Devon and Cornwall Police have said Automatic Number Place Recognition (ANPR) technology will be used to ensure that only essentialy journeys are being made.

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The current lockdown rules state you can only leave the house for an essential reason which includes exercise and buying food.

You can leave your home to exercise by yourself, with yourhousehold/bubble or on your own with one other person.

This should be limited to once per day, and you should not travel outside your local area.

As far as travelling to beauty spots goes, you should not do it unless one is very close to your home.

Chief Constable of Devon and Cornwall Police Shaun Sawyer said in addition to ANPR cameras deployed accross the region that officers will have acces to an app on their devies that will give them access to live information about vehicles they pass.

He said the increased measures come as residents in parts of Devon and Cornwall were becoming increasingly concerned that people were fleeing the capital to go to their second homes and potientally spreading the virus.

Mr Sawyer told DevonLive: "We are going to enforce and there is going to be an awful lot of activity and an awful lot of difficult conversations if this carries on."


Police and Crime Commissioner Alison Hernandez added: "I was saddened to hear about the reports of hundreds of Covid breaches over the weekend, many of which are understood to be related to second homes.

“As such, I welcome the force’s use of ANPR to monitor vehicle movements and make sure the only journeys being made here are essential ones.

"Using this technology helps us see where certain vehicles have come from and allows officers to further investigate their reasons for travel."

Last month, cops in North Yorkshire also used number plate recognition to stop Tier 3 drivers entering the county.

Last week, two women were fined £200 for driving five miles to go on a walk in the park.

Jessica Allen and Eliza Moore were also told the drinks they had with them – two peppermint teas from Starbucks – were classed “as a picnic.”

The police force involved, Derbyshire Police, have since dropped the fines.

Just before the third lockdown was announced, a group of 11 Covidiots who drove 150 miles to hike in the Peak District were fined for flouting Covid laws after one crashed his car.

The men had travelled from North London in three vehicles last Monday, the day Boris Johnson announced Britain's third national lockdown.

The men were fined £200 each for travelling between tier four areas.

Derbyshire Police also seized one of the three vehicles due to it being uninsured and sent its owner home on a train.

It comes as Covid-19 cases today jumped by 46,169 as deaths rose by 529 in the last 24 hours.

There have now been 3,118,518 Brits infected with the disease since the pandemic began, and the total death toll has reached a staggering 81,960.

Today's rise in cases is lower than it was last Monday, when 58,784 cases were recorded along with 407 deaths.

This is the equivalent to a 5.5 per cent increase in positive cases in the last seven days.

The rise in infections today is also lower than yesterday, when 54,940 people tested positive for the virus.

And the death toll is similarly lower today, in comparison to yesterday's 563 figure.

Figures on a Monday tend to be lower than the rest of the week due to a lag in reporting over the weekend.

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