Thank you to those who stayed at home to save lives

Surrey Police would like to say a huge thank you to all the Surrey residents who followed government advice to stay home to save lives this weekend.

 Despite the high temperatures, the majority of people in Surrey have followed government advice and stayed at home, exercised responsibly from their homes, and adhered to social distancing guidance to slow the spread of Covid19 and ensure demand on an already stretched NHS is managed to help save lives.

Unfortunately, not everyone has followed this advice.

Officers attended the A30 London Road in Virginia Water earlier today (5 April), to carry out parking enforcement due to complaints about illegal parking on the clearway.

A number of parking tickets incurring a £30 fine were issued.

Several people were spoken to who had driven to the location from as far away as Brentford and Weybridge to exercise.

Officers were also called following reports of more than 40 cars parked up at the Box Hill beauty spot, near Dorking, as people disregarded government instructions to stay local for their exercise.

Scores of people were discovered sun-bathing by police officers and PCSOs. A passing National Police Air Service helicopter on another call prompted quite a few to leave, but police on the ground still had to engage with a significant number and persuade them to leave.

Cars continued to arrive throughout the afternoon and officers were also alerted to a similar situation at Epsom Downs.

Over the weekend, officers have also spoken to a two men driving remote control cars in a park who had driven to the location and were not exercising; four teenagers (from two households), who had gone to the park together; one person sunbathing in a public park, because the garden outside his nearby block of flats was too busy; and eight people having a mini street party in a neighbour’s front garden.

Superintendent Chris Colley said: “We understand that in normal situations the warm weather is appealing and we all want to get out and about. However, these are not normal times. This is a national health emergency and everyone is urged to do their very best to slow the spread of this devastating virus. Every little thing we can do now will help reduce demand for the NHS and save lives.

“We need people to take responsibility and consider their actions before potentially putting other lives at risk. If we need to use the powers we have been granted under the Coronavirus Act we will do so.

“However, the majority of Surrey residents are adhering to the government’s guidelines to stay at home to save lives – a huge thank you to you all.”

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