Coronavirus: North Yorkshire Police begin road checkpoints

Image caption,
Checks were being made in York earlier

Road checkpoints are to be used in North Yorkshire to determine if drivers' journeys are essential.

It comes after people across the UK were urged to stay at home unless absolutely necessary to slow the spread of coronavirus.

The move is being introduced to ensure motorists are complying with government restrictions, North Yorkshire Police said.

The checkpoints will be in place at different locations across the county.

Assistant Chief Constable Mike Walker said: "The new and significant restrictions... spell out very clearly what each and every one of us must do to save lives.

"The message is clear and the warning stark: stay at home, save lives."

"These are the lives of the people we know and love. Our partners, mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, children, grandparents."

"You may never be in such a position again where your simple actions will lead directly to saving lives," he said.

Image caption,
It is hoped the checkpoints will help to avoid a repeat of scenes in Scarborough at the weekend

Mr Walker added: "We'll also be out on foot, with a highly visible policing presence, to disperse groups, enforce the social distancing measures and remind people of the seriousness of the situation we are facing."

Earlier this week, the force said some motorists in the county were exploiting quieter than usual roads to drive at "highly excessive speeds", potentially taking up valuable NHS resources in the event of a crash.

Large crowds also gathered at the weekend in local resorts, including Scarborough, Whitby and Filey.

Scarborough Council has now closed all public toilets across the region and is urging everyone to adhere to the government's lockdown.

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