In a televised statement on Monday evening, Johnson ordered people to only leave their homes under a list of “very limited purposes.”
And the PM ordered the immediate closure of all shops selling non-essential goods.
But the police have said phone lines are now being clogged with calls about what movements were still permitted.
The UK death toll will pass Italy at this rate
The British Nation has woken up to a new way fo life. It all changed after the Prime Minster TV address at 8:30 PM last night, the tone and seriousness of this pandemic have all gone up. Now the social distancing and lockdown will be enforced by the police. But this decision was not taken lightly.
The Prime Minister saw the projections of deaths and infections that the UK are heading for. And the drastic rise in deaths in the next two weeks has forced
the PM to take stricter measures. On our current trajectory, the Death Toll in the UK will be very similar to that of Italy, if not higher. That is based on the fact that the UK has only tested 50,000 people so far, with a potential 1,08 million who are vulnerable to the disease.
Without these new tougher measures the death toll in the UK would spiral out of control, a smaller landmass, more congested spaces and an under-resourced NHS all mean if this pandemic is controlled, it will kill a number closer to the 1,08 million who are vulnerable to it.
In his daily news briefing, the prime minister said the country faced a “moment of national emergency” and staying at home was necessary. In an attempt to protect the NHS, save lives and tackle “the biggest threat this country has faced for decades” people must stay home.
People are permitted to leave home to exercise once a day, travel to and from work where “absolutely necessary,” to shop for essential items and fulfil medical and care needs.
The restrictions have been put in place for a minimum of 3 weeks and will be kept under constant review.
“To put it simply, if too many people become seriously unwell at one time, the NHS will not be able to handle it – meaning more people are likely to die, not just from coronavirus but from other illnesses as well,” he said.
The new stricter measures have come amid people ignoring the government’s social distancing advice.
Over the weekend, crowds of people were seen at beaches, parks, markets and other public spaces around the country.
The new rules say people should only leave their homes if:
- Shopping for basic necessities such as food and medicine. Shopping trips should be as infrequent as possible
- One form of exercise a day such as a run, walk, or cycle. This should be done alone or only with people you live with but not in groups
- Any medical need, or to provide care or to help a vulnerable person. This includes moving children under the age of 18 between their parents’ homes, where applicable. Key workers or those with children identified as vulnerable can continue to take their children to school
- Travelling to and from work, but only where work absolutely cannot be done from home
Even under the new rules, people should keep a distance of two metres from people they don’t live with. And should minimise the amount of time they spend outside.
All social events, including weddings, baptisms and other ceremonies except funerals will be stopped immediately. And only immediate family members are allowed to attend funerals.
Open for business
Businesses that will be able to remain open include supermarkets, petrol stations, post offices and banks.
But places like libraries, non-essential shops, playgrounds, gyms and places of worship have been ordered to close.
Hostels, hotels, campsites and caravan parks must also close unless key workers need to remain there.
Parks will remain open for exercise but people are not allowed to gather in groups.
Community centres can stay open, but only for “hosting essential voluntary or public services” such as food banks or service for the homeless.
Police now have special powers to enforce the new rules, including fines and dispersing gatherings, the PM said.
As of Monday, 335 people have died with the virus in the UK, but most people die after at least two weeks in the hospital, the country should brace itself for the numbers of daily deaths to increase.
The new measures will undoubtedly have a huge impact on the country. Whilst the measures remain in place for at least three weeks, it’s likely it will be extended.
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