The majority of police enquiry offices across the force area have been closed in a bid to reduce the spread of Coronavirus – but officers say you can still report crimes if needed.
Anyone displaying coronavirus symptoms or self-isolating should follow Government advice and stay at home and report matters for the police through the website instead.
The local Police enquiry office that is in operation from 8am-8pm (weekdays) and 9am-5pm (weekends) is at Bridgwater Police Centre.
Assistant Chief Constable Stephen Cullen says: “This has not been an easy decision to make but has been made in accordance with the Government’s announcement on Monday that people should remain at home unless absolutely necessary to reduce the spread of this virus. The decision will remain under constant review.”
“By temporarily reducing the number of enquiry desks open it will allow us best maximise the resources available to the force at what is critical time for policing.”
“We remain committed to providing a visible police presence in all our communities, and any enquiries that would traditionally have been handled face-to-face will be conducted online through our website, including reporting non-urgent crimes.”
“Our website should be your first port of call and we urge people to only use our enquiries desks if absolutely essential. If you do need to, please adhere to the Government’s instructions about social distancing to keep you, our staff and others safe.”
“If you have typical coronavirus symptoms, such as a fever and/or a new persistent cough, then stay at home and do not come to one of our stations.”
“And, of course, our call-handlers will be available 24/7 but please only call 999 in a genuine emergency and only call 101 if you are unable to complete an online enquiry.”
Sue Mountstevens, Police and Crime Commissioner for Avon and Somerset, adds: “I know this has been a difficult decision for the Constabulary to make because enquiry offices are an important, visible, point of police contact for members of the public.”
“I am assured that careful consideration has been given to this decision in order to balance the needs of the public with maintaining the health of police staff, resilience of the workforce and ensuring we are doing everything to follow the latest restrictions from central government.”
“This measure will be under constant review by The Constabulary. I will liaise closely with Chief Constable Andy Marsh to monitor the numbers of people reporting through the various channels available on an ongoing basis so that we can assess the impact.”
Link to reporting issues to Police: https://www.avonandsomerset.police.uk/report/