‘£10,000 fine needed to ensure travellers isolate’

THE greatest threat to Guernsey as the island emerges from lockdown is via its borders, the chairman of the Civil Contingencies Authority told the States, as he spoke of reports that some travellers were not self-isolating.

Civil Contingencies Authority chairman Deputy Gavin St Pier. (Picture by Peter Frankland, 28318102)
Civil Contingencies Authority chairman Deputy Gavin St Pier. (Picture by Peter Frankland, 28318102)

Gavin St Pier said that this was one reason why the CCA wanted to increase the fine for those breaching the 14-day self-isolation period from £1,000 to £10,000.

Deputy St Pier was once again presenting updates to the emergency powers regulations that were brought in at the start of the pandemic.

However, on this occasion most of the changes involved certain areas being revoked, such as those concerning medical professionals, pharmacists and driving licences.

He also told members that, in future, the CCA would be looking to revise the regulations every two weeks.

It was the increase in the fine for breaching isolation that attracted some concern from members, including Deputy John Gollop, who said that it seemed a bit arbitrary and while this might be a lot for the average islander or visitor, it might not deter business people who could benefit from reducing the length of confinement.

Deputy Jennifer Merrett wondered how many people had breached quarantine before and if that had led to the need for the rise. Was it proportionate as a deterrent, she asked?

Deputy St Pier said that the increase in the fine was a well-considered decision and it was now at a similar level to that in Jersey and the Isle of Man.

It was the potential increase in the number of passengers travelling to the island and the increased risk this presented that had led the CCA to suggest the rise.

‘There have been a number of reports of travellers not fully understanding or adhering to the self-isolation provisions and therefore the rationale to increase the profile of this and its importance to us as a community was a further consideration.’

The changes were approved.

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