Metropolitan Police says they will be “stepping up” its response to target people flouring coronavirus regulations, as London prepares to enter tougher restrictions.

As of Saturday (October 17) all 32 boroughs in London will face a ‘high’ tier coronavirus alert level.

And police say that with the new restrictions imposed, there will be additional patrols to discourage and deal with breaches of the regulations.

Under Tier 2, people must not meet anybody outside their household or support bubble indoors – whether at home or in a public place.

Meetings can still happen at outdoor spaces in groups up to six people, and travel on public transport should be reduced as much as possible.

Metropolitan Police says their additional patrols will focus on evening periods near bars and pubs, where regulations are more commonly recorded.

The Met will continue to use the ‘4 Es’ approach of engagement, explaining the regulations, encouraging people to following them and only enforcing as a last resort.

Alongside London’s local authorities, the Met will also work to take tough action against licensed premises who put customers at risk by breaching the regulations, or by not maintaining the COVID Secure guidelines.

Deputy Assistant Commissioner Matt Twist, Met lead for Covid-19, said: “This is a critical moment in London’s fight against this deadly virus and over the coming weeks I know the vast majority of Londoners will make the right decisions in order to keep themselves and their families safe.

“Frustratingly, we have seen a small number of dangerous and reckless breaches of the regulations and as the alert level in London increases, we are adopting our policing approach. Communities across London can therefore expect to see an increase in our efforts to deal with the most deliberate, harmful and flagrant breaches of regulations. We will not hesitate to take action against those individuals or businesses who put people at risk.

“As we move into this new phase of heightened alert, I would urge people across the city to work with us. By each of us being responsible, we can help minimise the transmission of the virus and help keep London’s most vulnerable communities safe from harm.”

Londoners are being asked to report serious breaches to coronavirus restrictions by phoning 101 or using the online reporting systems.