Boris Johnson announces new measures to suppress Covid-19 in England
New measures are expected to be in place for six months
Boris Johnson today announced new measures to suppress the spread of coronavirus in the UK following a surge in recorded cases.
On Monday, Patrick Vallance announced that cases were doubling every seven days, and could reach figures as high as 50,000 new daily cases in November if left unabated.
The prime minister has since rolled out new rules, which he claims "balance saving lives with protecting jobs and livelihoods".
Those new rules are as follows:
- It is compulsory for both staff and customers to wear masks in shops, taxis, bars and restaurants and higher fines will be handed out for failing to comply
- Pubs and restaurants will be ordered to shut no later than 10pm
- Failing to self-isolate while suffering from symptoms or after testing positive will result in a £10k fine
- Businesses who fail to follow the rules regarding masks will also be fined £10k
- Breaking the 'rule of six' - socialising in groups of no more than six - will be punishable with a £200 fine
- Not wearing a mask in a shop/restaurant/pub/ will also lead to a £200 fine
The government also reserve the right to deploy military to assist the police in enforcing these new measures.
If we "fail to bring the R below 1, then we reserve the right to deploy greater fire power, with significantly greater restrictions," he said.
These measures will be implemented in England, while devolved administrations will be taking similar steps, Boris Johnson confirmed.
The prime minister was clear to state that this was not a return to the lockdown the country saw in March and that schools and universities will remain open.
“We are better prepared for second wave, but we will only be able to avoid it if our new measures work and our behaviour changes," he said.
"If we can reduce R to 1, we can save lives and shelter the economy... We're acting on the principle that a stitch in time saves nine."