London : A tougher three-tiered system of local restrictions against the Covid-19 pandemic will come into force in England when the ongoing lockdown ends on December 2, Downing Street said on Sunday. In a statement, Downing Street said that Prime Minister Boris Johnson is expected to set out his “Covid winter plan”, including families’ movement during at Christmas, to MPs on Monday.
The statement added that additional areas willbe placed into the higher tiers to keep the virus under control, adding that some curbs will be further strengthened to safeguard lockdown progress. It was not yet clear exactly how restrictions could change, but the 10 p.m. night curfew on pubs and restaurants will be extended. “Everyone’s efforts during the current national restrictions have helped bring the virus back under control, slowed its spread and eased pressures on the NHS.
“But the prime minister and his scientific advisers are clear the virus is still present – and without regional restrictions it could quickly run out of control again before vaccines and mass testing have had an effect. “That would put in jeopardy the progress the country has made, and once again risk intolerable pressure on the NHS,” the BBC quoted a Downing Street spokesperson as saying.
Also on Monday, the government’s Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) is expected to publish research, saying that measures in the previous tiers were not strong enough. Pre-lockdown, there were three tiers of restrictions – medium, high, and very high. As of Sunday, the UK has reported 1,493,383 confirmed coronavirus cases, with 54,626 deaths.