Donegal Gardaí step up checks on non-essential journeys in the fight against Covid-19

There will be an increase in checkpoints across the county

Operation Fanacht Donegal

Donegal gardaí appeal to people to stay at home if at all possible

Covid-19 figures in Donegal are still among the worst in the country, despite four weeks of Level 5 restrictions.

An Garda Síochána in Donegal are therefore appealing to the public over the next number of weeks to stay at home unless their journey is absolutely essential in support of the current public health advice.
 
As of today (Tuesday) the public can expect to see an increase in Operation Fanacht checkpoints across County Donegal’s vast road network. These will include static and random checkpoints.

At these checkpoints the public can be expect to be asked what the purpose of their journey is and those not undertaking essential journeys will be asked to return to their home.

The measures are being escalated to ensure compliance with public health guidelines and regulations in respect of Level 5 under the Framework for Living with Covid-19.

The public are reminded that penal provisions are set out under the Health Act 1947 (Section 31A-Temporary Restrictions) (Covid-19) (Amendment) (No.8) Regulations 2020 which came into effect on October 22, 2020.
 
Regulation 5(1) states ‘An applicable person shall not leave his or her place of residence without reasonable excuse’, and a penal provision applies.

In respect of regulations, which are declared to be Penal Regulations under the Health Act 1947 as amended, An Garda Síochána will adopt the approach of the Four Es which will see Gardaí engage, explain, encourage, and as a last resort, enforce. 

Inspector Siobhan Mollahan of Letterkenny Garda Station said: "I want to thank the public who have heeded the advice, however, traffic across the county has continued to remain busy and the numbers of positive Covid-19 cases are also remaining high.

"As we enter the final weeks of the current Level 5 restrictions we all need to re-double our efforts and together we can suppress this virus. In particular, we would ask people to think about their journeys and not exercise or travel outside the 5km limit unless it meets the essential criteria”.

High visibility community engagement patrols continue and as has been done since the start of pandemic, Gardaí will continue to engage with the most vulnerable in society to provide them with the necessary supports.

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