South Yorkshire Police issued more than 350 coronavirus lockdown fines, new figures reveal
South Yorkshire Police issued 366 fines for breaches of the coronavirus lockdown between March and June, new figures have revealed.
Police were given powers to break up gatherings and fine people for breaching restriction of movement rules under the Health Protection Regulations 2020 on March 27.
According to the National Police Chiefs Council, the number of fines issued peaked in the week ending April 16, which included the Easter Bank holiday, and began to fall from mid-May as restrictions began to be eased in England.
A total of 18,439 fixed penalty notices were recorded by forces up to June 22, including 15,856 in England and 2,583 in Wales.
However, only 1,691 tickets have been issued in England since Covid-19 restrictions were first eased on May 13, while just 358 have been handed out after June 1, when groups of six people were allowed to meet outdoors.
A spokesperson for South Yorkshire Police said they were currently unable to provide more details of when or where in the region breaches took place, or what people were fined for.
However, Superintendent Paul McCurry said: “The overwhelming majority of members of the public in South Yorkshire have been sensible and adhered to the Government’s restrictions and guidance throughout Covid-19.
“This has been, and continues to be, an uncertain and anxious time for many people, and I can’t thank people enough for their continued support.
“We recognise that the prolonged period of isolation and restricted movement has been difficult, which is why our approach has always been to engage with people, explain to them the current Government restrictions and advice, and encourage them to follow what is being asked of them.
“The vast majority of people have adhered to what has been asked of them, but we have issued fines as a response to persistent or blatant breaches of Covid-19 restrictions.
“Engagement has always been the preferred option, but we have moved to enforcement in cases where it’s been deemed necessary to protect the wider public.”