CHIEF Constable of West Mercia Police Anthony Bangham has declared COVID-19 as a ‘major incident’ across Worcestershire.
Mr Bangham said he did not want to take enforcement action but ‘would do so if required’.
“In the light of further developments at both national and local level, I want to reassure the communities of West Mercia that we will continue to work hard to keep you safe and support you through the coming weeks,” he said.
“Like everyone, we as an organisation are also feeling the impact of the COVID-19 virus.
“However, please be assured that we are taking effective steps to mitigate this impact to ensure essential activities and services are maintained.
“We are here 24/7 and will respond to you as and when you need us but we have moved to a more critical level of policing in our force and some functions will have to reduce in order for us to prioritise our emergency response.
“We understand that these new restrictions will place added pressure and strain on families and individuals but there is support for you.”
Mr Bangham added that anyone who feels threatened or in danger shouldn’t hesitate to phone 999.
West Mercia Police will continue to work with local authorities, other emergency services and charities to provide an effective police force.
And Police and Crime Commissioner John Campion has urged the public to listen to Government advice to help reduce the pressure on emergency services.
“We will beat this virus together.”