Surge in Police Scotland call-outs to lockdown infringements during warm weather

Officers used their Covid-19 powers nearly 2,500 times on Wednesday 6 May.

Police speak to sunbathers in Glasgow Green as the weather warmed up around Scotland on 6 May. Picture: John Devlin.

These were among a total of 6,731 such interventions over the week from 30 April to 6 May.

The action led to 599 enforcements, such as fines, with a “substantial” number of them on 5 and 6 May.

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There were a further 381 fines issued in the week to Wednesday, along with 23 arrests.

Police speaking to sunbathers on Glasgow Green on 6 May. Picture: John Devlin.

That brings the total fines during the lockdown to 2,644 and 166 arrests

Police Scotland said the good weather on 6 May had contributed to a “significant” increase in calls to the non-emergency 101 number, from 4,500-6,000 in previous days to 7,000.

An update to the Scottish Police Authority today stated: “It appears the hot weather encouraged more people to go outside, against the guidance.”

The interventions total compared to 10,910 over the previous two weeks – indicating an increase in the latest figures.

The figures showed an accompanying increase in public nuisance incidents, which were up in the week to 6 May by 259 per cent on last year compared to being up 207 per cent in the previous two weeks.

The increase in noise complaints on last year was up by 44 per cent compared to 39 per cent before.

However, crime overall was down by 35 per cent on last year and by 24 per cent on the previous week.

Fraud was up by 20 per cent on the previous week and significantly higher than a year ago.

A total of 138 Police Scotland officers and staff have tested positive for Covid-19 among 835 tests to date.

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In Scotland, people are only permitted to go out for exercise, to do essential shopping, for medical needs or travel to work if it cannot be done at home.

The restriction on only exercising once a day was lifted this week, but driving to beauty spots, parks and beaches remains banned.

Sports pitches, tennis courts and play parks are also off limits.

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