A bridge too far: Moment police bust a 30-person Covid-breaching rave taking place in an underpass beneath the busy M6 motorway
- Police shut down the 30-person rave which took place under the M6 on Saturday
- Details of 22 people were taken who will be issued £200 fines for the breach
- Organiser could face £10k fine & man found with suitcase of sound equipment
Police busted a 30-person Covid-breaching rave taking place in an underpass beneath the busy M6 motorway.
A member of the public raised the alarm about the planned event, with revellers given a muster point before the location, underneath the bridge at junction 4 on the border of the West Midlands and Warwickshire, was revealed.
West Midlands Police were able to locate the rave which took place in the early hours on Saturday with the help of police drones, a helicopter and thermal imaging cameras which showed the group dancing to the booming music.
A rave attended by around 30 people (pictured) underneath the bridge at junction 4 on the border of the West Midlands and Warwickshire was broke up by police
Police used a drone with thermal imaging cameras and a helicopter to safely break up the rave during the early hours on Saturday
Some of those gathered fled into the night but officers were positioned nearby as the event broke up they took the details of 22 people to issue them with £200 fines.
One man was found with a suitcase carrying sound equipment and a van believed to have been used in setting up the event has been seized after getting stuck in the mud.
The man could now face a £10,000 if he’s found to have organised the event.
Officers found the gathering, which was being held dangerously close to a river and motorway, but decided not to move in immediately.
Worried that those gathered may flee and fall into the river or try to escape onto the motorway if large numbers of officers suddenly appeared, they called in support from the police drone and helicopter.
The organiser of the event faces a possible £10,000 fine and 22 people are to be issued with £200 fines for the breach
The thermal imaging cameras on the drone revealed around 30 people partying under the bridge and the helicopter’s night lights were used to break up the gathering.
The motorway was briefly shut to minimise the risk to people there and one woman was helped from the river after falling in.
Assistant Chief Constable Chris Todd said: ‘This was an unauthorised event that would have been illegal outside of CoVID-19 legislation – but considering the public health context it’s an even more irresponsible act.
‘I’d like to thank the officers who attended what was a very challenging scene, late at night, by a motorway and on the banks of a river, acting with public safety as their priority throughout.
One man was found with a suitcase with sound equipment inside and a van has been seized after it became stuck in mud close to the rave
‘They made sure everyone was safe by closing the motorway for a short period and even helped one woman from the river. Thankfully no-one was hurt.
‘We will be issuing 22 people with fines and will be looking to identify other people who attended the illegal gathering.
‘I understand people’s frustrations at having endured a long lockdown but amassing in large numbers like this for an unlicensed event in such a dangerous environment is not acceptable and we have to take action.’
While social contact rules eased today, meaning people gather in groups of six, West Midlands Police stressed such events are illegal and we’ll continue to break them up and fine those involved.