With the lockdown expected to last until the end of the month at least here are the rules you should be aware of.
Can I get fined for going out?
The instruction is to stay at home whenever possible, except for when there is a “reasonable excuse”. These reasons include work, volunteering, food shopping, exercise or medical reasons.
But if the police catch someone leaving their home without what is classed as a “reasonable excuse” then a fine can be imposed. The cost of a first offence is £200, which is lowered to £100 if paid within 14 days, and £400 for a second offence. The fine is doubled for each further offence up to a maximum of £6,400.
How are police told to react?
Here is some advice from West Midlands Police “If a person, gathering, or business is found in breach of the restrictions, we will:
“Talk to them and help them understand the new restrictions; explain the new guidance and ask them to comply as soon as possible; make it clear that we are dealing with a national health emergency and they must obey; reinforce the importance of complying so that their actions and behaviours do not harm others; remind them that the measures are here to protect our NHS, our country and in particular the vulnerable.”
Can police stop me from ‘mingling’ outside?
Official advice states that, ‘It is against the law to meet socially with family or friends unless they are part of your household or support bubble. You cannot leave home for recreational or leisure purposes (such as for a picnic or a social meeting).’
Can I get arrested for exercising?
No. Advice states that you should ‘minimise time spent outside your home, but you can leave your home to exercise. This should be limited to once per day, and you should not travel outside your local area.’
What about face coverings?
Advice says, “People over the age of 10 must wear a face covering on public transport, in shops and supermarkets, and in other indoor spaces like museums, cinemas and places of worship.”
Exceptions include: physical or mental illness, impairment or disability which prevents you wearing a face covering; taking medicine, eating and drinking when necessary; lip reading; travelling to escape harm or if you are asked to remove your face covering by someone in authority.