Respect Devon and Cornwall – police plea after record levels of 999 calls and anti-social behaviour

PUBLISHED: 12:49 12 August 2020 | UPDATED: 12:49 12 August 2020

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Police are calling on residents and tourists to respect Devon and Cornwall after a weekend that saw record 999 calls and increased levels of anti-social behaviour.

Over Saturday, August 8, and Sunday, August 9, the force saw more than 2,300 999 calls, compared to 1,819 in the same period for 2019 - an increase of 26.5 per cent.

And up to Monday (August 10), this month has already seen 9,622 999 calls received – significantly up on the 12-month rolling daily average of 718 calls to 999 per day.

The force has also seen use of online webchat demand more than double.

Despite the record levels of demand, the force has managed to cope with the many thousands more people in the region during sustained periods of good weather.

Police, partner agencies and tourism bosses say Devon and Cornwall is largely full to capacity and advised anyone looking to visit to book ahead of travelling.

Assistant Chief Constable Jim Colwell said: “We have seen some unprecedented demand at the weekend, particularly in our control rooms.

“While resourcing is undoubtedly a challenge at this time of year, this summer appearing to be more than previous years, we remain buoyant and our communities and visitors alike can be reassured we will do our utmost to protect them and provide a first-class service.”

In addition to extra 999 call demand, Devon and Cornwall also saw significant increases in anti-social behaviour and public order incidents over the last weekend.

There were 31 reports of environmental anti-social behaviour (ASB) – the dumping of rubbish, disposable barbeques and other waste.

There were also 191 reports of nuisance ASB and a further 102 reports of personal ASB – often drink related.

This equates to a 67 per cent increase on all types of ASB on the same period in 2019.

Assistant Chief Constable Colwell added: “The levels of ASB recorded over the weekend are unacceptably high.

“We understand people want to enjoy what our region has to offer, but please do this safely and within the law, otherwise police will take proactive enforcement action to protect others.”


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