Police officers from Surrey and Sussex are carrying out valuable work to support local colleagues and residents in the hurricane-hit British Virgin Islands (BVI).
Nine police officers from the Surrey and Sussex forces are amongst a contingent of officers from a total of 14 forces from across the UK who flew out to the BVI on September 10, to assist the local police.
The officers comprise one superintendent from the joint Surrey and Sussex Operations Command, one sergeant from Sussex, and seven constables (five from Sussex and two from Surrey), as requested by the National Police Co-ordination Centre (NPoCC).
Following official requests made through the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, NPoCC worked with government partners and the Ministry of Defence to arrange this deployment.
Officers are embedded with the local military HQ and are supporting the local force in maintaining law, order and policing services.
Tasks so far have included securing and searching the local prison and visiting a refuge centre.
Officers have also been carrying out reassurance patrolling, and helping clear debris.
Assistant Chief Constable Steve Barry, head of the Surrey and Sussex Police Operations Command, said: “It’s great to know that our officers are proving their worth and are providing essential support and comfort to local people.”
All costs will be paid for by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the deployment of the officers does not affect the ability of the Surrey and Sussex forces to continue to provide a full policing service in both counties.
Sussex Police is also arranging for two trail bikes and a van to be sent to storm-ravaged Anguilla, where the police force is headed by former Sussex chief superintendent Paul Morrison, to help them get around and help local people more effectively.