Wednesday, 21 Oct 2020

Is your area one of 200 at risk of strict tier three lockdown?

A coronavirus heat map has revealed more than 200 towns and cities that are at risk of being plunged into a strict new three-tier lockdown.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has launched a new ‘traffic light’ system of measures that will see the country broken down into categories of high, medium or low risk from Monday, MailOnline reports.

There will be three ‘alert levels’ – with number 1 being green, number 2 being amber and the top alert level 3 being red.

The green level would see things remain as they are at the moment, with the ‘rule of six’ in place.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak is expected to announce a special furlough-style compensation scheme later today to help workers and companies hit by local lockdowns.

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The areas expected to be placed under the harshest lockdowns are Merseyside and other parts of northern England, where hospital admissions and infections continue to spike.

The Government has not yet revealed its threshold for its three-tier system. 

But the most up-to-date coronavirus infection rate data, from October 5, shows 214 towns, cities and boroughs saw at least 50 cases for every 100,000 people. Nationwide, England’s infection rate is 59 per 100,000. The map below shows which areas could be placed under each alert level.

The majority of areas with high cases are in the North, where the virus has taken hold after migrating from London, the UK’s former epicentre, during the first wave.

Nottingham and Knowsley – where more than 600 people are testing positive per 100,000 of the population – and Liverpool (578), Manchester (543) and Newcastle (498) are expected to be the first places to be put under the strictest measures.

Other areas likely to be on the lockdown list include Burnley (428), Sheffield (398), Exeter (390), Leeds (389) and Sefton (381). 

Although there is a clear North-South coronavirus divide in England, there are still towns and cities in southern parts that could be put under local lockdowns.

Brentwood (79 per 100,000), in Essex, Bournemouth (76), Bristol (65), Bath (68) and Brighton (66) all fall into the harshest tier, according to the map.

Areas with the highest infection rates

Based on Press Association analysis of positive tests up to October 5 

Areas with the lowest infection rates

Based on Press Association analysis of positive tests up to October 5 

And every London borough is also being monitored closely by health bosses because infection rates are above 50 per 100,000.

It comes as the country recorded another huge jump in coronavirus cases yesterday, with 17,540 more people testing positive in 24 hours.

That is a huge leap from Wednesday, when cases doubled in the space of a week with 14,162 new infections.

The Department of Health said another 77 deaths were recorded on Thursday, raising the death toll to 57,347.

Mr Johnson is coming under increasing pressure from scientists to go further and impose a nationwide ‘circuit breaker’ lockdown – similar to that announced by Nicola Sturgeon on Wednesday.

Pubs and restaurants and other hospitality venues in Scotland will only be allowed to open indoors between 6am and 6pm under the 16-day curfew – on the condition they don’t serve alcohol.

To soften the blow these curbs will have on Scotland’s hospitality industry, Ms Sturgeon announced an additional £40million of funding to help keep businesses afloat.

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