WILKES-BARRE, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU-TV) Pennsylvania State Police (PSP) held a conference on Wednesday about current and future procedures during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Lieutenant Colonel Scott Price, Deputy Commissioner of Operations, says the public has mainly been following the orders already in place.
“We’re really enjoying a great deal of cooperation among the members of the public and among our partners. And we understand that this is a really difficult time for folks. There’s a lot of uncertainty.”
Price says this pandemic is new territory for officers when it comes to enforcement.
“It’s an unusual role for us. It’s a public health emergency. And so we’re a bit out of our comfort zone admittedly. But we’re doing everything we can to support the public safety mission.”
He says there are protocols that are being used to limit officers’ exposure to the virus which seem to be working.
“We’ve had 11 PSP personnel confirmed positive. We have 87 negative tests to date. I think we have 1 pending testing and about 10 troopers self-quarantined. So we’ve been very fortunate and our processes and procedures have been largely effective.”
He says so far they’ve had very limited enforcement action.
“7 citations and 4 different incidents and 34 warnings for stay-at-home orders. And then worker safety, 0 citations and 30 warnings.”
Price says until now, state police’s enforcement strategy has been reactive. But now, as counties move into the yellow phase, he say the plan is to be more proactive.
“Because we’re transitioning, we’re gonna see more people out and about it will put is in a position to be somewhat more proactively visible and patrolling.”