POLICE will patrol border roads into Wales and be given the power to fine people in order to enforce new travel restrictions, the first minister has revealed.

New restrictions will come in to force tomorrow, banning people from travelling from coronavirus hotspots across the UK to places of low prevalence in Wales.

Currently there are no rules restricting travel from lockdown areas in England, though the prime minister has issued guidance.

Speaking to BBC Breakfast this morning, Mark Drakeford said: "The problem with that is that police cannot take action on the basis of guidance, they need the rule of law."

The first minister went on to explain how police in Wales would be enforcing the new restrictions, including the use of numberplate recognition.

Mr Drakeford said: "Police will have long practiced techniques, developed earlier in the year, and will apply them over the weeks to come.

"They will have extra patrols on the main roads coming in to Wales.

"If there are people that do not realise that the guidance in England is that you should not travel if you live in such areas, and do not realise that the rules in Wales do not allow you to, the police will make sure people understand the rules.

"Most people will then be very happy to comply with those rules.

"If there are a minority of people who breach the law then fixed penalty notices will be applied to them."


Mark Bleasdale, Welsh lead with the Police Federation of England and Wales, claimed last night that the new rules would be unenforceable, however the first minister disagreed.

He said: "We would not have thought of introducing these if we had not discussed it with police forces here in Wales and with the police and crime commissioners.

"They will take the action that they need to take.

"Enforcements is the final resort no the first resort. What we want to do is reinforce the message to people that this is a public health emergency that they should not be travelling from high incidence areas to low incidence areas wherever they are.

"Not just in Wales, but England and Scotland as well.

"Most people we know will want to do the right thing and this is an attempt to make sure that just as Welsh people in high incidence areas are not able to travel to these areas, people from beyond those areas are not able to travel here either."