Hundreds of police deployed for Olympics duty
Almost 200 officers from Devon and Cornwall Police will be on Olympic security detail in Dorset and London on a single day, new figures show.
All forces have been asked to provide "mutual aid" by dispatching officers to help police the games which start in London in July.
The bulk of Devon and Cornwall's officers involved will be going to Weymouth, in Dorset, which is hosting the Olympic sailing events, although some specialist officers are being deployed to London.
Figures released by the Association of Chief Police Officers showed the commitments made by every police force in the country. Devon and Cornwall are to deploy 406 officers over 69 days, meaning that at its peak, the force will have 192 officers on Olympic duty outside the two counties. There are an estimated 3,000 officers in Devon and Cornwall.
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The scale of the operation has raised concerns, particularly with crime rates in the two counties rising while officer number are falling because of budget cuts, and because it falls at the peak of the tourist season.
But Assistant Chief Constable Paul Netherton said the deployments would not impact on "day-to-day policing".
"The Olympic torch relay has shown we can deploy significant numbers of officers on Olympic events without impacting on normal, day-to-day policing," he said.
"We have had more officers involved in the torch relay than the predicted busiest day when we are supporting the Olympic events.
"We have ensured that we will maintain our force capability at all times Devon and Cornwall and look forward to celebrating the Olympics as we have enjoyed hosting the first days of the torch relay."
The Police Federation in Devon and Cornwall, which represents constables, sergeants and inspectors, has already voiced concerns about the impact of the Olympics.
Branch chairman Nigel Rabbitts said: "My colleagues do not feel reassured at the moment. We are going to have to wait and see what the impact is. It couldn't be at a worse time for us because it is our busiest time of year."
ACPO said the number of officers deployed from each force was proportionate "ensuring that each force is providing aid based upon an assessment of the force total size, its specific capabilities and with consideration to local events".
It said in a statement: "While daily deployments will fluctuate, each force will provide a proportionately fair contribution."
They said the mutual aid was being paid for by the Home Office budget for Olympic security, adding that annual leave had been restricted for police officers left in the region.