Police: Emergency situation rules broken 6,000 times

Police. Source: Rene Suurkaev/ERR

During the emergency situation, police responded to more than 6,000 breaches of restrictions imposed by the government.

Twice as many patrol units as usual worked across Estonia during the emergency situation. The Police and Border Guard Board (PPA) are now reducing the amount of patrols, with the Health Board (Terviseamet) now in control of ensuring compliance with coronavirus restrictions.

While police were alerted of around 300 daily breaches of movement restrictions during the first days of the emergency situation, the number decreased to some 20 before the emergency situation came to an end. Toomas Malva, crisis management chief at the Police and Border Guard Board, told ERR that calls usually pointed out serious infringments.

"We are grateful for all information. We tried to verify the info as swiftly as possible and it cannot be said that there were many false calls," Malva said.

"People themselves were the heroes who observed the rules and those who were liable to err were reminded by fellow citizens," said Director General of the Alert Center Kätlin Alvela.

Police had to respond on more than 6,000 occasions. Repeat offenders were fined 110 times, the average fine amounted to under €400.

"This was an interesting experience for us, as we had plenty of work during daytime. As selling alcohol was forbidden at night, the amount of calls related to alcohol remained on the same level, but they all came during daytime," Malva explained.

The number of patrol units was increased in relation to the restrictions. As the emergency situation has ended and the restrictions are being eased, the number of units is also being reduced.

"Even though the emergency situation has ended, many restrictions still remain in force. Police activity will not remain on the same level as it was during the emergency situation. This will be reflected in the amount of patrols and we are moving towards regular representation," PPA official Tago Trei on Thursday told ERR's online news in Estonian.


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Editor: Anders Nõmm

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