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RCMP take precautions due to COVID-19

Limited access to front counter services at all detachments has been implemented
Athabasca RCMP are discouraging people from coming to the Detachment for non-emergencies due to COVID-19 precautions. File
ATHABASCA – A March 16 press release from the Alberta RCMP said social distancing measures are being implemented because the safety of Albertans and RCMP employees remains their number one priority. 

Due to recent developments and evolving information surrounding the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19), Alberta RCMP detachments and offices may defer or arrange to provide alternatives for certain services normally delivered in a Detachment.  

Athabasca RCMP Corp. Steve Bereza said the Detachment is open, but they are asking the public to avoid coming in as much as possible. 

“We're asking people not to come to detachment unless they absolutely have to,” he said. “Anything that can wait to please wait, or you could call it in. Anything that's non-investigative accident or non-injury collisions, just phone stuff in. They can send documents to us.” 

This practice will be evaluated on a regular basis and the public will be notified when normal business resumes the release stated. 

Detachment front counter services are being be deferred to help maintain social distancing as prescribed by Alberta Health, Bereza confirmed. 

“Even when we fingerprint people, we're not going to fingerprint anybody unless it's absolutely required because they need it for a job or anything like that,” he stated. “And even then, we're going to have the precaution of personal protective equipment.” 

There has been no change to the Alberta RCMP’s response to critical and emergency matters and people are encouraged to continue to call 911 for emergencies. 

“We're just taking some of the precautions that everybody else is doing and just limiting access to the public as much as we can,” Bereza confirmed. “But nothing's changed in regard to our policing services – we get the calls; we're going to deal with stuff.” 

RCMP are encouraging people to call the local administrative line to confirm which services are available before showing up at the detachment and to stay home if you are feeling sick or have any symptoms of COVID-19. 

COVID-19 UPDATE: Follow our COVID-19 special section for the latest local and national news on the coronavirus pandemic, as well as resources, FAQs and more.

Heather Stocking,
Follow me on Twitter @HLSox