1 1 2
If Covid hospitalisations continue to rise the beginning of a firebreak lockdown could be seen in the UK.
When could a firebreak lockdown happen in the UK?
A firebreak lockdown could be introduced in the UK in October, bringing some changes with it.
What is a firebreak lockdown?
A firebreak lockdown means that the UK could see some restrictions fall back into place.
The UK could be set for ‘firebreak’ lockdown in October if Covid hospitalisations continue to rise.
After speaking to SAGE, the i newspaper reported that October half term could be extended to a fortnight rather than a week.
While a full lockdown is unlikely, it is reported some travel restrictions could be reintroduced.
Government denies plan for October half-term lockdown but says option remains open if NHS overwhelmed
Downing Street has not ruled out a “firebreak” lockdown as a last resort if the NHS were to be overwhelmed by Covid cases in England, but denied there were plans for one during October’s half-term school holiday.
With cases expected to rise further this autumn, some scientists have been warning that restrictions could be necessary in the coming months, such as limits on gatherings and a return to compulsory indoor masking.
A member of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) told the i paper that a “precautionary break” could be part of “contingency plans”, with another saying that “a firebreak lockdown is by no means out of the question”. They speculated this could take place during October half-term, with the break lengthened to two weeks rather than one.
Plans for a ‘firebreak’ October lockdown and longer half term break reportedly being considered if NHS Covid admissions continue to rise
If Covid-19 hospitalisations continue to rise could the UK face a firebreak lockdown next month?
The government is reportedly drawing up contingency plans that could see schools forced to close for a longer period over October half term, as part of emergency efforts to break transmission chains if there is a need to rapidly bring down case numbers.
There are concerns that with coronavirus cases once again on the rise, and all pupils now back at school, that hospitalisations too in the coming weeks will begin to rocket.
The government has denied planning an October lockdown in England, after a newspaper report said the opposite.
The i newspaper said plans had been drawn up to extend the school half-term holiday, if the number of hospitalisations continue at the current level.
The i said a full lockdown was unlikely – but the government could introduce some rules as part of a “firebreak”.
However the Department for Education said the report was “not true”.
“It is not true that the government is planning a lockdown or firebreak around the October half term,” it said in a tweet.
The prime minister’s spokesman also denied the report. He said plans had been kept for a range of scenarios – “but these kind of measures would only be reintroduced as a last resort to prevent unsustainable pressure on our NHS”.