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Policing Covid regulations in warm weather is challenge for RGP

Eastern beach was temporarily closed by the Royal Gibraltar Police on Friday as people flocked to Gibraltar’s beaches to make the most of the weather, making it difficult to enforce the Covid-19 regulations for social distancing.

The police also considered closing Catalan Bay after noticing lots of young people there.

The Upper Rock was another spot where the RGP had to approach groups of adults and youngsters on bikes who were out and about together.

Assistant Commissioner Richard Ullger told the Chronicle that under current regulations people can go to the beach, have a swim and then leave.

But people were “taking advantage” and staying out to sunbathe and socialising with each other in “tighter spaces”, Mr Ullger said.

He explained that officers from the RGP are using the four E’s when dealing with people – engaging, explaining, encouraging and enforcement.

“First of all they engage with people and explain what the current rules and regulations are, then they encourage them to abide by them, and if that does not work, then it leads to enforcement,” Mr Ullger said.

“It was a particularly difficult day for policing as it was one of the best days we have had so far and there were lots of people out on the streets.”

“Lots of people were of course sticking to social distancing rules but we also noted groups of people who are not from the same household together.”

Mr Ullger could not confirm if any arrests were made, but said that the RGP is currently enforcing the Government regulations while also dealing with crime and the day-to-day policing duties.