While many businesses and services have been disrupted by COVID-19, Upper Fraser Valley Regional RCMP spokesperson Mike Rail wants the public to know that officers are still out there, doing their best to keep Chilliwack safe.
On the roads, there’s no taking advantage of these abnormal times to start speeding or running red lights.
“Our officers are still enforcing the traffic laws, while keeping our close contact with people to a minimum,” Rail confirmed. “We may look differently from time to time, wearing the N95 masks and protective gloves, but we’re still on the roads protecting the public.
“The laws are still in effect.”
Rail said the RCMP already has protocols in place to deal with virus-type scenarios, and those protocols have been ‘heightened’ in the current climate.
“We don’t know who we’re dealing with day to day, and dealing with disease and viruses and hazardous materials, that’s something police officers have been trained for,” he noted. “If you’re stopped by one of our traffic service members, part of that heightened protection is that you’ll be asked questions like, ‘Have you traveled out of the country or have you displayed symptoms?’
“Operations Communication Centre (OCC) dispatchers will ask the same type of questions and the information that is gathered determines how the interactions are conducted.
“Overall, we’re doing the same things we’ve always done, just with heightened protocols.”
Where RCMP operations have changed in response to the coronavirus is in the realm of planned enforcement activities like the distracted driving campaign.
“Any initiatives where we would be would be stopping traffic at a checkpoint, looking for distracted or impaired drivers, those have been put on hold during COVID,” Rail said.