Photo: Greater Manchester
The United Kingdom was forced to impose an even tougher lockdown in several parts of northern England after a surge in the rate of transmission of COVID-19, the government announced late at night.
The UK recorded its highest number of new COVID-19 infections since June 26, with there being 846 new cases found on July 30, prompting plenty to worry about the possibility of a second wave of infections.
The lockdown measures were imposed on Greater Manchester and parts of West Yorkshire and East Lancashire, yet people can still go to the pub or to work, despite these measures.
The places that were put into these extended lockdown measures house around 4 million people.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock told Sky that “The problem with this virus is that it thrives on the social contact which makes life worth living.”
He added that he totally understands “the human impact of this but unfortunately that is how the virus passes on”.
When questioned by the BBC over a possible second wave in the UK, he claimed that it is still not underway as of yet, but the health authorities will be “absolutely determined to take the action that is needed”.
The measures state that people in the area cannot socialise with other households at home or in their gardens, not even being allowed to meet with other households in pubs, restaurants, cafes, shops, places of worship or even at leisure venues.
However, people can go to a pub or to places of worship with their own household members.
Those failing to abide by the regulations will face a fine of £100.
Plenty of people were left annoyed by the fact that the decision was announced so late at night, with it being announced at 10 o’clock at night in England, especially since the measures were set to be in practice just two hours after.
Scottish National party MP Dr Philippa Whitford said “Do you seriously think this is the way to announce such a huge #Lockdown – 10 o’clock at night to start at midnight?”
The UK has registered 302,301 cases of COVID-19 as of July 30, with a reported 45,999 deaths related to the virus.