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Weekend visitors still ignoring COVID warnings and advice to stay away from North Yorkshire

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This weekend proved to be another busy weekend for police in North Yorkshire, with the force seeing no dip in visitors to the area or the number of fines issued.

61 fines were issued across Saturday and Sunday, with Malham again proving to be a ‘hot-spot’ for out-of-area day-trippers, with 12 of the 61 fines issued being in the vicinity.

Nine of those fines were issued to a group of men, who had travelled to Malham from Halifax, Braford and Southend-on-Sea, and were preparing to make quite a day of it when officers found them with two lit kettle bowl barbeques, bags of charcoal and plenty of food and drink to keep them going.

Some other visitors to the region this weekend, who left with a fine were:

  • A family from Sheffield who decided to take a trip to the Yorkshire coast, but broke down on the A64
  • A group of off-road bikers from West Yorkshire who came to ride their bikes in Selby
  • Four people from London visiting Dibbles Bridge with no good reason
  • Five people from Leeds who had travelled to Lumby to have their picture taken next to a specific pylon

Officers from the Roads Policing Group were also kept busy responding to collisions across the region, one of which was near to Pateley Bridge and involved a group from Essex, who fortunately suffered only minor injuries.

Speaking about the weekend’s activities Assistant Chief Constable Mike Walker said:

“Yet again we’ve seen a number of people ignoring both Government advice and the multiple requests we have made stay away from North Yorkshire.

“Sadly there seems to be a minority of people who think that they are immune to the COVID-19 virus and who choose to not only endanger themselves, but also endanger others through their irresponsible behaviour.

“By travelling long distances and meeting up with friends you expose yourself and others to the virus, put strain on the emergency services who are working hard to keep as many people as possible safe and put the communities you visit at risk – by potentially bringing the virus into the area with you.

“With a bank holiday approaching, we are already preparing for next weekend and rather frustratingly, based on our experience, we expect it to be a very busy weekend. Sadly, there will be no extended break or celebrations for our officers, who will be out in force. We will be  carrying out our patrols and maintaining our commitment to keeping the public as safe as we possibly can and continuing to protect the NHS from the risk of a second wave of this deadly virus.

“As ever, my advice would be to stay safe at home, exercise locally and not to make any unnecessary journeys. It’s not a new message, its one we all know – but nevertheless it’s a message that we will be continuing to drive home throughout the week.”

Last modified: May 4, 2020