North Yorkshire Police Superintendent Mike Walker has warned residents against “relaxing their approach” to the national lockdown after reports of people breaking rules in recent weeks.

Speaking at the North Yorkshire Local Resilience Forum weekly press conference, Superintendent Mike Walker emphasised the importance of continuing to stick to the lockdown rules, in order to move safely out of lockdown.

Supt Walker said:

“It seems people are starting to relax their approach to the national lockdown and are starting to bend the rules a bit further, with more people heading to the coast for a day out.

“Yes we know the vaccination programme offers great hope, but we’re not at the point where we can abandon social distancing and all other precautions we’ve been taking over the past year by throwing caution to the wind.

“The Prime Minister said clearly that the road map will be led by data and not dates, so let’s not jeopardise that now.”

The plea comes after North Yorkshire Police revealed a further 20 fines for breaking coronavirus regulations have been given out in the Harrogate district in the past week.

Supt Walker added:

“I know we all have the 29th March circled in our calendars and are crossing off the days until we can see loved ones again, so imagine the disappointment we will feel, myself included, if the Prime Minister announces that the data does not support us moving to the next phase.

“That’s why North Yorkshire Police will keep policing the regulations and take enforcement action against breaches. We will keep sending out patrols and will keep engaging with the public. We want to protect all of our chances of moving out of lockdown as quickly and as safely as possible.”

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