The Bermuda Police Service (BPS) hosted a joint news conference with safety personnel today to highlight measures being put in place for the upcoming 2023 Cup Match Classic.
Members of the public were advised that there will be a strong police presence at various venues and on Bermuda’s road during the two-day event being hosted this year by the St George’s Cricket Club.
On Thursday, August 3, Friday, August 4, and throughout the holiday weekend, Acting Detective Superintendent Sherwin Joseph said the BPS, will be working in partnership with the Bermuda Reserve Police, the Royal Bermuda Regiment and St John Ambulance.
“To ensure that the environment is safe for everyone the Joint Agency Command Centre, as in previous years, will be prepared to respond to any calls of service that are proportionate and appropriate,” he said.
“Similarly, in particular on Thursday, the BPS, working in partnership with the Parks Department and other relevant stakeholders, will maintain a robust presence at Horseshoe Bay Beach. We also intend to use a drone to monitor and direct police response to calls of service.
“In keeping with our roads policing strategy to reduce road collisions on our roads, the BPS, supported by reserve officers, will conduct high-visibility patrols island wide and will also man a number of road sobriety checkpoints.
“The BPS, with our reserve officers, will work alongside our partners at RBR Coastguard to ensure that a strong and visible presence is evident on our waters,” he added.
“Our advice to you is to have fun but have fun in a safe manner. Be responsible and considerate to others.”
Both St George’s Club President Neil Paynter and Somerset Cricket Club President Richard Scott looked forward to the upcoming classic.
“We are looking forward to a wonderful match next week, the grounds are looking immaculate,” said Mr Scott.
“One of the things we are looking forward to is a safe and happy Cup Match. We look forward to defending our trophy and coming down to Wellington Oval not only to defend it but take that trophy back home with a victory.”
Mr Paynter said: “We want everyone to come to Wellington Oval and have a great time and that’s what Cup Match is really about — it is about us coming together. May the team St George’s win.”
He also stated that the host club will not be selling alcohol this year.
And at this point in time he said there were no plans to televise the two-day classic live on television.
On that note, he said the club was not in the business of streaming or television.
Any entity interested in doing that would be responsible for getting their own sponsorship, he added.
On the flip side, he encouraged spectators to buy their tickets ahead of time online, with the hope that 10,000 people would attend the event over the two days.
Meanwhile, Acting Chief Environment and Health Officer, Armell Thomas urged residents attending the match to be wary of the anticipated high temperatures.
“It is now 88 degrees which can be 110 degrees with humidity,” he said.
“I encourage all the stall owners to ensure they have sufficient people so persons can take breaks, make sure they have enough water and nourishment. Dress appropriately.
“We will be checking that the club has sufficient restrooms and that the water is potable — we have already taken samples and we are waiting for the big day.”
Acting Building Control Officer for the Department of Planning, added: “Don’t make any modifications to the scaffolding. The cross members might obstruct your view but they are there for your safety.”
As for the planned police presence at other venues, the BPS will be working in conjunction with the Parks Department and other stakeholders, at Horseshoe Bay Beach on Thursday, August 3.
Together they will provide “a robust presence” at the popular South Shore beach.
“We have traditionally seen an uptick in attendance to this location on the Thursday of the long weekend. We also intend to utilise a drone to monitor and direct police response to calls for service.
“Our presence at these locations are necessary to discourage those members of our community who may seek to disrupt the weekend’s festivities with acts of violence or anti-social behaviour,” said Mr Joseph.
“In keeping with the road safety strategy to reduce road traffic collisions on our roads, the Bermuda Police Service supported by our Police Reserves, will conduct high visibility patrols island wide, and will man a number of roadside sobriety checkpoints throughout the island,” he added.
“It is our intention to engage the motoring public in the form of visible presence, issuing motorist advisory notices, moving violation tickets; and to arrest where it is legal, necessary and appropriate to do so. These types of engagements are necessary to calm our roads, deter drunk and dangerous driving and make the roads safer for all of us.
“In addition, the Bermuda Police Service and Reserve officers will work alongside our partners at the Royal Bermuda Regiment Coastguard, to ensure that a strong and visible presence is evident on our waters.
“We ask that sea goers ensure that their vessels are registered, that all necessary operating and safety equipment is on board, and that they have sufficient fuel for their journey.
“Please let someone know when you intend to leave and when you expect to return. It is also recommended that a float plan is filed with Bermuda Maritime Operations Centre, on VHF channel 27, if heading offshore.”
Overall, he urged everyone “to have fun, but have fun in a safe and responsible manner. Be considerate to other persons and drink responsibly”.
“In closing, on behalf of the Commissioner of Police and his Senior Leadership Team, we wish each and every one of you a Happy Cup Match that is safe and enjoyable.”