By Chief Inspector Neil Mitchell

I BEGIN on a sad note following the tragic death of a motorist who died following a collision on the A198 near Dirleton and I wish to take this opportunity to pass my sincere condolences to his family and friends.

One of our policing priorities for 2020-2023 is improving road safety and in recent months we have significantly stepped up our campaign of roads safety checks across the area.

Whenever a serious accident occurs we review the circumstances and the road layout and, where it is required, we work with East Lothian Council and look to make improvements to prevent further accidents.

My colleagues in our Roads Policing division are investigating this and have issued an appeal for information.

I would encourage anyone with information, including those who may have been in the area and may have dash-cam footage of any of the vehicles, to contact us on 101, quoting incident number 1444 of June 4.

There has been lots of debate and some confusion surrounding the Covid-19 regulations and guidelines for Scotland.

Over the warm weekend issues arose owing to inconsiderate and, at times, dangerous parking around the coastal routes by people accessing the beaches.

These regulations may be eased further in the coming weeks but for now the position remains as follows: people should only leave the house for very limited purposes, for example for basic necessities, for exercise or recreation, for medical needs or travelling for work which cannot be done from home.

The Chief Constable has made it clear that we are asking people to take personal responsibility to do the right thing and to remember that the purpose of these measures is to aid the collective effort to protect the NHS and save lives by preventing the virus from spreading.

My officers will continue to engage with the public, explain the legislation and guidance and encourage compliance.

We will use enforcement as a last resort only, where there is a clear breach of the legislation.

I recognise that people have made significant sacrifices until now and while the temptation may be to head straight for one of our beauty spots, we would ask people to use their judgement and avoid going to places which are normally busy during the good weather.

Complying with the legislation about meeting only one other household outdoors at any one time and following the Scottish Government’s guidance about avoiding travelling long distances will stop our parks and beaches from becoming over-crowded and help ensure appropriate physical distancing is maintained, reducing the spread of coronavirus.

I have seen a recent increase in youth related disorder brought on by the warm weather and easing of the lockdown measures.

To prevent further issues, I ask that you make efforts to know where your children are, who they are with and ensure they, too, are complying with the guidelines and not engaging in anti-social behaviour.

My officers will continue to robustly tackle crime and disorder in our communities but we need your help to do this effectively.

Finally, I hope that the weather picks up again soon and want people to enjoy our outdoor spaces safely but please continue to follow the guidelines to keep everyone safe.