Talking Point
Police: mainly Blue (no risk of material disruption)

The October evaluation found all 43 police forces in England and Wales plus the National Criminal Intelligence Service (NCIS) and the National Crime Squad (NCS) to be ready for Y2K. But Tayside police force, in Scotland, is still rated Amber. It is expected to complete Y2K preparations by the end of October.

The Association of Chief Police Officers said forces would continue to work closely with their partners in central and local governmment, and with other emergency and essential services.

In July, 42 forces were rated Amber and in May, four had been Red.

Other criminal justice bodies

Work in magistrates and crown courts was independently assessed at 100% Blue by October.

The Crown Prosectution Service was also rated Blue and is confident it can deal with any incidents that may need court hearings over the festive period. It will also be ready to give legal advice to the police if necessary. There are contingency plans in place in the event of computer problems - though these are not expected.

The HM Prison Service in England and Wales and the Probation Services in England and Wales have also been assessed as Blue as has the Scottish Prison Service.

Party time means work time

Police forces across the UK are expecting an increase in workload over the New Year, but not because of the millennium bug. The party mood in pubs and clubs may well be dampened as fights break out.

And while people go out to celebrate the New Year, burglars may try to target empty homes.

They could well take advantage of fears that the millennium bug will trigger thousands of burglar alarms that could go unanswered. Some forces have said they will not be able to cope if there are widespread problems so many alarms could go unanswered.

Because of the volume of work, most forces are being helped out by the Army with transport and administration.

The Action 2000 traffic light codes:

Blue: The assessment has not identified any risks of material disruption to the infrastructure process.

Amber: The assessment indicates that there is some risk of material disruption to infrastructure processes, but that there is an agreed containment plan to rectify shortcomings.

Red: The assessment indicates that there is a severe risk of material disruption to infrastructure processes and that timely rectification might not be possible.

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