South west England full to capacity, say police 

The south west of England is “full to capacity” leading to “unprecedented demand” for 999 services in Devon and Cornwall, police have warned.

The force received 2,301 emergency calls at the weekend, a 26.5% increase on the same period in 2019.

Anti-social behaviour accounted for many of the calls, with a 67% increase year on year.

Devon and Cornwall Police has asked people to “respect our region”.

Assistant Chief Constable Jim Colwell said the weekend’s events, spurred on by the hot weather, had resulted in an “unprecedented demand”, forcing officers to attend a “plethora of different incidents”.

It included 31 reports of environmental anti-social behaviour (ASB), including disposable barbeques and other waste being left behind by people.

Officers said a further 102 reports of ASB were “often drink-related”, and recorded another 191 reports of people being a “nuisance”.

‘Unacceptably high’

In August alone, the force said it had taken 9,622 calls, equating to about 962 per day and “significantly up” on the average 718.

Residents in Cornwall previously said they were “too scared” to go shopping due to the number of visitors, with respondents in one Devon town adding they were “exhausted and overwhelmed” by the levels of disregard shown by incomers.

ACC Colwell described the figures as “unacceptably high” and called on tourists to “think” before they travel to the region.

“Book your accommodation before you travel, drive safely on our roads, respect our coasts and drink responsibly,” he said.

“If you are visiting the many outstanding areas of natural beauty we have, take your rubbish away and play your part in making Devon and Cornwall a safe place for our residents and tourists alike.”