When residents or businesses fail to follow the rules and guidelines set out by the Welsh Government, there is the potential to put others at a heightened risk of contracting Covid-19. In order to protect the majority of people who do follow the measures that are in place, new powers have been granted to Local Authorities and Police to ensure that we can keep Wales and RCT safe.
View details of the Welsh Government powers.
We hope people understand the severity of the situation we are facing and will comply with the regulations, without having to issue penalties.
Who enforces the restrictions?
The restrictions are being enforced by local authority environmental health officers and the police.
What can enforcement officers do?
They can issue fixed penalty notices or recommend prosecution in a magistrates’ court. In addition, they have wide-ranging powers to take practical steps to disperse gatherings, require people to go home and enter property.
What if reasonable measures to minimise the risk of exposure to coronavirus aren’t taken on premises or in the workplace?
Local authority enforcement officers are now able to issue a premises improvement notice. This requires the person responsible for the premises to take specified measures, and if those measures are not taken an officer may issue a “premises closure notice” requiring the premises to close. Where necessary, an officer may also issue a premises closure notice without having previously issued a premises improvement notice.
So if people don’t comply premises can be closed down.
What will the police do?
The police in Wales will engage with people, explain what they need to do and encourage them to comply. But our police forces have been given powers and they will use them – the restrictions will be enforced if people don’t respond.
What are the financial penalties?
The coronavirus regulations include provisions for a fixed penalty notice to be issued for most types of breaches of the regulations, carrying a fine of £60; this is increased to £120 for a second offence and continues to double for repeated offences, up to a maximum of £1,920. If prosecuted, however, a court can impose any fine (it is not limited).