A Welsh police force confirmed that officers stopped more than 500 vehicles on the first weekend of the firebreak lockdown
Gwent Police confirmed its officers stopped the vehicles as part of “proactive patrols” in communities across the force area of Gwent, which includes Newport, Monmouthshire, Blaenau Gwent, Caerphilly and Torfaen.
The force also confirmed that it issued a “number” of fixed penalty notices for house parties and large gatherings.
A statement from Gwent Police said: “During the first weekend of new restrictions, we carried out proactive patrols and engaged with more than 500 motorists.
“We issued a number of fixed penalty notices including for house parties and large gatherings.”
A Gwent Police Twitter account also tweeted on Saturday that officers were carrying out patrols and issuing fixed penalties on Friday night, sharing an image from the Prince of Wales Bridge on the border with England.
Discussing its response to the lockdown, the statement from Gwent Police also said: “We know this is a very difficult time for all and we thank members of our community for their continued support as we all work together to keep everyone safe.
“From the start of this pandemic and throughout this new lockdown, we’ll be continuing to engage with our communities and explain the importance of keeping Wales safe. For those who knowingly go against these restrictions, we will take enforcement action.
“We all have a part to play and here at Gwent Police we will continue to do our very best to protect and reassure our communities.”
Bonfire night and Halloween gatherings banned in Wales:
The national firebreak lockdown in Wales means that if individuals are found to be breaking guidelines, they could have to pay a fixed penalty notice of £60, rising to £120 for the second breach.
There are five main rules of the lockdown, which began on October 23, are:
People must stay at home, except for very limited purposes.
People must not visit other households or meet other people they do not live with.
Certain businesses and venues, including bars, restaurants and most shops must close
Secondary schools will provide learning online only for the week after half-term, other than for children in years seven and eight. Primary schools and childcare settings will remain open.
Face coverings continue to be mandatory in the indoor public spaces that remain open (subject to certain exemptions and exceptions), including on public transport and in taxis
Last week, Gloucestershire Constabulary also confirmed it would establish police checks on the English side of the border during the firebreak lockdown to encourage people to stick to the measures put in place by the Welsh Government.
Speaking on Friday, a spokesman for Gloucestershire Constabulary said: “While we cannot issue fines to those travelling from Wales into the county we can inform the host force of those we stop about what has happened so they can take action.
“Officers will be running an operation from tomorrow and over the weekend that will cover routes from Wales into the Forest of Dean and if we stop someone travelling from Wales we will be engaging with them to find out why, explaining the legislation and encouraging them to turn around if we are not satisfied with their explanation.”