More troops called in to enforce lockdown

  • Checkpoints set up to enforce shelter-at-home orders will be doubled (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

    Checkpoints set up to enforce shelter-at-home orders will be doubled (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

  • Security checks: RBR troops at the airport yesterday (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

    Security checks: RBR troops at the airport yesterday (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)


More troops are to be called up to boost the enforcement of the state of emergency shelter-in-place regulations, the Government said last night.

Wayne Caines, the national security minister, said he would today ask John Rankin, the Governor, to increase the number of embodied soldiers to 250 from the present number of 130.

He added: “I believe we need to throw more resources at this.

“We now have to ensure that Bermudians respect this shelter-in-place and it appears that a number of people are not getting it.”

Mr Caines said that on Saturday and Sunday police had received reports of DJs playing music in neighbourhoods, with residents coming out into streets “like it was Cup Match”.

He said officers attended the neighbourhoods to “remind” those present that a shelter-in- place order was in effect”.

Mr Caines added: “When we hear about these things happening around the island, we believe that we must now scale up because of the significance of what we are going through as a country.”

Stephen Corbishley, the Commissioner of Police said officers would double the number of checkpoints across the island from last night.

He added: “This will impact people. It will be slower to travel, but the issue is to get, clearly, the advice across to people who continue to flout the guidelines.

“This is about something that is very small for people to do but significant for others.”

Mr Corbishley said officers had been given “ridiculous” excuses from people caught on the streets during lockdown hours.

He added: “I know it’s a frustration, but it is about keeping people in the vicinity of their homes and socially distanced so we can address issues.

Mr Corbishley said some people with hyphenated names had tried to use the letter lowest in the alphabet to get around new rules where people can only shop according to their surname.

He added: “Some people are arguing over their surnames because they have double-barrelled names — such small issues, but they are put on us to address.”

David Burt, the Premier, said: “A minority of the people of the country chose to ignore the rules, jeopardising their health and the health of others.

“To those persons, I say stop. If you do not care about yourself, think about your fellow Bermudians who are already hospitalised with this disease. Think about the countries that have had their healthcare systems overwhelmed from those suffering with the virus.

“Think about the Bermudian families who have lost loved ones and are grieving tonight.”

Mr Burt added: “Shelter-in-place is a sacrifice, a sacrifice that in the long run will benefit this country and save lives.”

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Published Apr 7, 2020 at 8:00 am (Updated Apr 7, 2020 at 2:30 pm)

More troops called in to enforce lockdown

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