Chennai traffic police take extra precautions to stay safe from coronavirus

No new cases in the past two days, says Additional Commissioner of Police

From witnessing two to three COVID-19 positive case daily, Chennai City Traffic Police have managed to beat the novel coronavirus for now. No new case has been reported in the past two days.

The city police have taken a series of steps including making its personnel adhere to COVID-appropriate behaviour, frequent rest to personnel and deployment of a team of doctors.

Additional Commissioner of Police Pradip Kumar told The Hindu, "It is a good sign that COVID-19 positive rate, among traffic personnel, is coming down. Last two days we haven’t had any positive case in traffic strength though there were two positives a day earlier. Situation has been improving. However we should not lower our guard. That is the message to our people. Be doubly cautious and take additional safety measures like compulsorily wearing a face shield and mask, particularly while conducting vehicle checks."

Nine police personnel had succumbed to COVID-19 in the year and many tested positive for the virus. Police personnel in Chennai and across the State have been toiling day and night to ensure that everyone follows the prohibitory orders. At the initiative of City Police Commissioner Shankar Jiwal, a team of doctors and health staff on mobile, has been launched to check the health condition of police personnel standing at vehicle checking points frequently.

"After the lockdown restrictions were relaxed from Monday, vehicle movement has increased on the roads and the exposure of traffic police personnel with the people has also increased. We want to take care of their health and other issues. We are conducting a medical check up for police personnel on the spot — at the place of their duty. For that we are coordinating with voluntary organisations such as rotary clubs and different people at different places. They are being given refreshment on the spot. There are eight personnel at one check point — four people will be checking vehicles and the other four will be at rest." said Mr. Kumar.

He said, "We also appeal to the public to come forward to cooperate with police personnel when their vehicles are stopped for checking as the police personnel are doing their duty. It should not be taken as harassment and hindrance to their work or movement. Our aim is to prevent the spread of COVID-19."

After movement of vehicles has increased drastically, it is not possible to check each and every vehicle like a few days back. Now vehicle checks are being conducted at random. If vehicles display e-registration, they will be allowed. "Since there are multiple checkpoints all over the city, because of that our enforcement has increased. We were booking 2,400 petty cases two days before. The figure was almost 4,000 cases on Tuesday," said Mr.Kumar.

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