Two men impersonating police officers pulled over a driver and attempted to fine her £60 for unnecessary travels amid the coronavirus lockdown.
The carer was driving through Brandesburton, East Yorks, yesterday around 9.30am when two men signaled for her to pull over.
The scammers, dressed in black zip-up hoodies, carrying walkie-talkies and wearing earpieces, demanded that the woman pay an on-the-spot fine in cash.
She refused to pay the £60 and drove off.
But Humberside Police had to explain that it was not stopping vehicles in relation to Covid-19.
Chief Superintendent Darren Downs said: “I would like to make clear that our current approach to new legislation and powers does not involve routinely stopping any vehicles to enquire where people are driving to and if it’s an essential journey.
“In our general day to day policing role, we do stop vehicles where there is a reason to do so, for instance driving erratically, speeding or without due care or attention, and this will continue.
“However, there are no checkpoints or stop areas in place and drivers will not be pulled over by officers to just ask where they are going, unless it is in response to a specific event, for example we see or become aware of a number of vehicles that are travelling to a mass gathering.
For those concerned they have coronavirus in the UK, Public Health England has issued advice about how to self-isolate.
1. Stay at home: Don't leave your house except when you need to seek medical care. Ask for help buying groceries or have them delivered.
2. Stay away from your housemates: Stick in a well-ventilated room away from others, with the door closed. Use a separate bathroom and wear a facemask when it shared areas.
3. Call ahead before visiting the doctors so they can take extra precautionary measures.
4. Cover you coughs and sneezes: Make sure to cover your nose and mouth and to throw away disposable tissues in a plastic waste bag.
5. Wash your hands regularly: This should be done often and thoroughly with soap and water, for at least 20 seconds, rinse and dry thoroughly.
6. Avoid sharing household items: You should not share dishes, drinking glasses, cups, eating utensils, towels, bedding or other items with other people in your home when you have used them. After using these items, wash them thoroughly with soap and water.
7. Do not have visitors in your home.
8. Keep away from your pets if possible.
9. Keep your clothes clean: Do laundry on the highest temperature possible and clean all surfaces around the washing machine.
10. Monitor your symptoms: Seek prompt medical attention if your illness is worsening, for example, if you have difficulty breathing, or if the person you are caring for symptoms are worsening.
“Our approach to policing the new rules is around engagement with the public as opposed to enforcement, and with any of the powers, we will always try to talk to people first and explain the situation, to encourage individuals to adhere to the Government’s guidance.
“The fines that have been granted as a power to use as part of the new legislation are a very last resort, and if enforced, they would never be an “on the spot” fine. A fixed penalty notice would be issued to the individual with the instructions on how to pay within a certain period of time.
“If you are stopped by anyone who appears to be portraying themselves as an official, always ask to see some form of identification and if you are concerned for your safety or are in danger, immediately call 999.
“Please be aware and alert to anyone who may attempt to take advantage of these unprecedented times we find ourselves in.
“We know the majority of people are all pulling together, however there will always be a small number of people who choose to exploit situations, and we will take strong action against them.”
This comes as the government has handed police unprecedented powers in a bid to curb the spread of the killer virus.
Introduced on Thursday (26/3) with immediate effect, the new powers allow enforcement officers to disperse groups using “reasonable force” and arrest those who fail to comply.
Those who ignore the tougher restrictions could be hit with a £60 fine and £120 if they re-offend.