Gardaí to relaunch Operation Fanacht ahead of May Bank Holiday 11 months ago

Gardaí to relaunch Operation Fanacht ahead of May Bank Holiday

Gardaí have announced plans to relaunch Operation Fanacht ahead of the long weekend.

A statement from An Garda Síochána issued on Monday afternoon confirmed that Gardaí would be ramping up checkpoints and sending additional patrols to beaches and prominent leisure spots over the long weekend.

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The original operation was put in place in the days leading up to the Easter Bank Holiday, amid reports that many people were planning to flout social distancing rules and visit their holiday homes.

The second iteration of Operation Fanacht will now run from 7am on Tuesday (28 April) until the end of the May Bank Holiday weekend Monday (2 May). Described as a "major Garda operation on public health travel restrictions," it will once again involve "large-scale checkpoints on many main routes, and thousands of mobile checkpoints on secondary routes and in towns and villages."

Patrols will also be increased at popular tourism locations, parks and natural beauty spots.

According to today's statement, at any one time there will be over 2,500 Gardaí involved in checkpoints or high-visibility patrolling.

Speaking today, Deputy Commissioner, Policing and Security, John Twomey said, "When we last ran Operation Fanacht there was a high level of compliance from the public. It is vital that we see that again.

"I want to thank the public for their co-operation so far. We know it has not been easy and has required significant sacrifices."

The announcement follows today's admission by Liz Canavan, of the Department of the Taoiseach, that people "are getting very fed up" of the restrictions in place.

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Speaking today, Canavan said: "We’re aware of reports on social media that some people are getting very fed up of the social distancing measures.

"They’re feeling confined, they’re stuck in the house or local area and they’re having to queue up to get into shops.

"We do know how frustrating it is and we know people’s patience and resolve is waning. We know that every day, we are putting out that call for solidarity and community spirit, as well as personal and collective behavioural change, inventiveness and resilience from all of you."