The Garda Commissioner Drew Harris has said the majority of people are "very compliant" with the current Covid-19 restrictions and regulations. 

Speaking on RTÉ's Crimecall programme, Commissioner Drew Harris said that breaches of regulations in which the Gardaí have to engage in enforcement are "very rare".

He was speaking after details of a policing plan for the forthcoming weekend to prevent the spread of the coronavirus were announced.

Operation Fanacht is to begin tomorrow morning to prevent people travelling across the country in advance of the bank holiday.

The operation will run from 7am tomorrow until the end of the May bank holiday weekend on Monday night, 4 May.

Commissioner Harris said the gardaí are well resourced to enforce their policing plan, to prevent the spread of Covid-19. 

The Deputy Commissioner, John Twomey, has described this as "a critical week for the country" and says the gardaí need the high level of compliance to continue to save lives.

It will involve large-scale checkpoints on many main routes and thousands of mobile checkpoints on secondary routes and in towns and villages.

The operation will also see gardaí conduct high-visibility patrols at major tourist locations, parks and natural beauty spots to ensure compliance with restrictions.

Over 2,500 gardaí are being deployed for high-visibility policing, mobile patrols and on thousands checkpoints on major and minor roads all over the country.

Operation Fanacht previously ran from 8 April until 13 April in the run-up to, and during, the Easter weekend.

The garda force is operating a policing policy known colloquially as 'the four Es' - to engage, explain, encourage and only if necessary enforce the emergency legislation.

However, gardaí have no enforcement powers in relation to day visitors from Northern Ireland or others who live outside the jurisdiction because of what is known as a "lacuna", or gap, in the regulations.

A number of public representatives along the border have called for the legislation to be amended to ensure they apply to everyone, including those who live outside the State.

The HSE's latest epidemiology Covid-19 report shows that two border counties, Cavan and Monaghan, are along with Dublin the worst affected counties per head of population as regards incidents of the coronavirus.

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Speaking today, Garda Deputy Commissioner John Twomey said: "When we last ran Operation Fanacht there was a high level of compliance from the public. It is vital that we see that again.

"I want to thank the public for their co-operation so far. We know it has not been easy and has required significant sacrifices.

"We need this compliance to continue. This is a critical week for the country. If we all work together, we can help save the lives of our family, friends, neighbours and colleagues." 

He said that it had been long planned to run Operation Fanacht again during this week in the run up to and over the May bank holiday weekend.