To protect employees and the citizens they serve, Clay Center Police Chief Bill Robinson announced yesterday that the department has implemented new safety measures as a precaution due to the coronavirus.  

“We are a small department and in order to continue to serve the community and provide law enforcement services we must stay healthy,” Robinson said in a release.  “We also want to avoid exposing citizens we encounter to potential infection.  These practices will remain in place until further notice.”

 The new procedures are:

• When possible, officers will maintain a 6-foot distance between themselves and people they are interacting with.

• In-person response to calls will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis to determine if an officer can appropriately respond by phone.

• Unnecessary contact such as handshaking will be eliminated.

• During traffic stops you may be asked to exit your vehicle, so the officer does not have to come close and speak to you through your vehicle window.

• Officers will ask you to step outside your home to speak to them to reduce the risk of disease transmission.

 • The department asks  that you tell responding officers if you are under quarantine or have tested positive for COVID-19 when they arrive so they can take proper precautions.   

• If you appear to be ill, officers may ask you to wear a surgical mask during the contact.