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7 June 2016, 07:23
Dorset Police say they're working with pubs and bars to try to minimise trouble associated with Euro 2016.
The tournament starts this Friday (10 June) until 10 July, with many fans expected out for England matches. Officers are also targeting drink-driving and domestic abuse.
A UK policing team will travel to France to work with their local counterparts offering support and advice on how to manage visiting fans. This joint working has been successful in the past.
Superintendent Ian Drummond-Smith, of Devon & Cornwall Police and Dorset Police, said:
“Plans have been in place both locally and nationally in relation to policing this summer’s football tournament and we have plenty of experience in policing major sporting events within the region.
“At a local level we have worked closely with partner agencies, bars, pubs and social clubs to help them prepare for the tournament and make them aware of both their responsibilities, but also where they can turn for advice."
On 1 June, everyone in the UK who has a football banning order is being prevented from leaving the country until the Euro 2016 football competition has ended; locally, 43 people have been ordered to surrender their passports.
Officers are at ports across the three counties and will detain those who are attempting to leave the country under a football banning order.
Supt Drummond-Smith has warned fans who think it is acceptable to cause trouble either in France or back in the UK that their actions will have huge consequences:
“The vast majority of supporters will be genuine fans travelling to France to enjoy the country and the football. Officers from the police football intelligence unit will be on duty throughout the tournament.
“We will monitor all incidents and any arrests in France or within Dorset, Devon and Cornwall linked to the football, with a view to applying to the courts for football banning orders where appropriate.”
Police are also advising football fans to have fun, but drink responsibly during this summer’s football tournament. During previous football tournaments incidents of alcohol-related violence, including domestic abuse, increased following major football matches.
The police are keen to send out a clear message to possible offenders that these types of crime will not be tolerated and urge those who are victims of these crimes to seek help and support.
Supt Drummond-Smith said:
“We want to remind people that alcohol is not an excuse and we will be taking a robust stance in dealing with any perpetrators of violent crime and domestic abuse.
“Our advice to victims would be that if you are worried that you will be more at risk during the competition don’t wait – contact the police or any of the victim support services where you will receive the help that you need."
People may be drinking more alcohol whilst watching Euro 2016, and there could be a rise in people drink driving following matches or still being over the limit the next morning.
Supt Drummond-Smith added:
“Please do not take the risk by driving when under the influence. Not only could you lose your licence or your job, you are risking your life and the wellbeing of others by getting behind the wheel when drunk.
“Our advice is to plan ahead to get home safely, and always ensure that you are under the limit when driving the following morning.”
For information around alcohol and drinking visit: www.drinkaware.co.uk
For help and advice domestic abuse call National Domestic Abuse Helpline on 0808 2000 247 or Devon and Cornwall, and Dorset Police on 101 or visit www.domesticabusehelp.co.uk