Operation Fanacht: Seven arrests nationally for refusal to self-isolate

Operation Fanacht: Seven arrests nationally for refusal to self-isolate
Garda Padraic White and Garda Brian Flynn conduct a travel restriction checkpoint at the Lower Road, Cork. Picture Dan Linehan

Over 200 checkpoints along with visibility patrols at tourist spots were carried out nationally in line with Operation Fanacht over the past week.

The major operation ran from Wednesday April 8 until Monday April 13 and resulted in seven arrests under the Health Act 1947- Section 31A- Temporary Restrictions (Covid 19) Regulations 2020.

There were 150 permanent checkpoints on major routes, over 500 shorter and mobile checkpoints, as well as a large number of high visibility patrols at tourist locations, natural beauty spots, and parks and beaches.

In addition, there were 144 COVID-19 related incidents that started as potential breaches of the regulations, but during the incidents, other offences were disclosed.

A Garda on duty at Inchydoney Beach in West Cork as part of the Covid-19 corona regulations. Picture Dan Linehan
A Garda on duty at Inchydoney Beach in West Cork as part of the Covid-19 corona regulations. Picture Dan Linehan

According to a Garda spokesperson, long-standing legislation for offences such as public order, assault, road traffic, and drugs were used in these cases. This included incidents involving house/street parties, gatherings beyond the family unit, and non-essential travel.

Commissioner Drew Harris said the country displayed a high level of compliance with the regulations and said he hoped this would continue over the coming weeks.

"There was a very high level of compliance with the public health guidelines over the Easter weekend. I want to thank the public for that. This has helped saved lives. We now need people to continue that high level of compliance over the coming weeks. Working together we can reduce the spread of COVID-19.

Garda Padraic White and Garda Brian Flynn conduct a travel restriction checkpoint at the Lower Road, Cork. Picture Dan Linehan
Garda Padraic White and Garda Brian Flynn conduct a travel restriction checkpoint at the Lower Road, Cork. Picture Dan Linehan

"Regrettably, there was a small minority who did not adhere to the guidelines or other legislation and Garda members had no option but to use the regulations or other legislation. This demonstrates the need for the regulations not only from an enforcement point of view, but also to support those who are willingly living their lives in line with the public health guidelines,” Commissioner Harris said.

Operation Fanacht also improved road safety and there were a number of detections across the weekend in areas such as speeding and drug/drink driving.

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