POLICE have started using checkpoints to stop vehicles and ask drivers if their journey is essential during the coronavirus lockdown.
Cops across the UK have been asking drivers today where they are going and why they are going there.
They are reminding drivers of the message to stay at home during the coronavirus crisis.
Derbyshire Police even released drone footage, calling out people going out on “non-essential” trips including walks to beauty spots and to take social media snaps.
Road checks were seen across the UK including Devon, Harrogate and York, where officers quizzed drivers on their journeys and whether they were “essential”.
It comes as cops were handed new powers to fine Brits up to £1000 for breaking the rules for being outside their homes from TODAY.
Roadblocks have been set up today in Plymouth, Devon and Cornwall, with 150 cars checked in Penzance, Hayle and St Ives.
Police in Plymouth shared a photo of their roadblock on Twitter.
In Cornwall, officers shared news of the stops on the Facebook page Penzance Police.
They wrote: “Essential journey? Driving to exercise at another location is NOT an essential journey!
“Yesterday we stopped and checked over 150 vehicles in the Penzance, Hayle and St Ives area.
“Drivers were asked if their journey was essential. We will continue to carry out these checks because, like you, we want to keep Cornwall safe.
“Please share and let’s keep travel to an absolute minimum.”
North Yorkshire Police also announced they were introducing checkpoints today.
Assistant Chief Constable Mike Walker said: “The new and significant restrictions announced by the Prime Minister on Monday evening spell out very clearly what each and every one of us must do to save lives. The message is clear, and the warning stark.
Stay at home; save lives.
“These are the lives of the people we know and love—our partners, mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, children, grandparents.
“You may never be in such a position again where your simple actions will lead directly to saving lives.”
The force said the checkpoints would be unannounced and could appear anywhere any time.
‘NOT A HOLIDAY’
Earlier this week, Metropolitan Police officers were seen clearing Shepherd’s Bush Green of sunbathers on the first day of the UK-wide coronavirus lockdown.
One officer could be heard saying: “Can you all go home, please. It’s not a holiday, it’s a lockdown.”
Police were seen out in force in Greenwich Park today – as the government said people who continue to flout lockdown rules will be breaking the law and could be arrested by police under new public health regulations.
Officers will aim to slow the spread of coronavirus by asking people to go indoors and will be authorised to use force if they refuse.
The base rate for the fine is £60, which is then reduced to £30 if paid within 14 days.
Several of the same offences will see the charges soar, with Brits hit with a £960 fine for not doing their bit.
Those who keep disobeying can be arrested and locked up.
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