Northern Ireland news

Travelling for exercise 'breaches regulations', senior PSNI officer says

Travelling for exercise could breach coronavirus lockdown regulations, a senior PSNI officer has said

People who travel for exercise when they do not need to are breach of coronavirus lockdown regulations, a senior PSNI officer has said.

Assistant Chief Constable Alan Todd said only necessary journeys are allowed under the rules.

He said officers will make judgement calls in individual cases.

READ MORE: Increased coronavirus testing needed in Northern Ireland, says coroner

In a statement issued today, the senior officer said people must first ask themselves if they need to leave home.

"The restrictions are clear in that they require you to not only have a reason to leave home, but a necessity," he said.

"Leaving home without that necessity may put you in breach of restrictions.

"The keys for us are, is your journey necessary and is it reasonable? These are the questions you need to ask yourself before you travel because the test of reasonableness and necessity are the parameters within which police officers must operate."

ACC Alan Todd is coordinating the PSNI's Covid-19 response

He told the BBC that 206 fines had been issued for breaking the rules on social distancing, but only four of those related to travel for exercise.

Mr Todd thanked everyone who was sticking to the guidelines and social distancing rules.

"I know that you are being asked to make extraordinary changes to your lifestyle and I know this is a really difficult time for people; but you are making a difference and you are saving lives."

First Minister Arlene Foster yesterday said the restrictions will last until at least May 9.



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