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COVID-19: All the latest LIVE worldwide updates - today's updates are also on our Portal page, here)

Coronavirus - 26th March 2021

Kitkat
Kitkat

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Post by Kitkat Fri Mar 26 2021, 18:06

Summary for Friday, 26th March

  • The number testing positive for coronavirus is levelling off in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, and has risen in Scotland, official figures suggest
  • Infection levels in secondary school-age children rose slightly in England although they fell in older teenagers, according to the Office for National Statistics
  • The UK's R number has narrowed slightly to 0.7-0.9 from 0.6-0.9 last week - it shows the epidemic is still shrinking because it remains below 1
  • The EU called on vaccine producer AstraZeneca to "catch up" with promised deliveries before exporting doses elsewhere
  • European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said the company must honour its contracts
  • Germany's disease control agency says there are very clear signs the third Covid-19 wave could be much worse than the previous two
  • Wales will be the first UK nation to scrap travel restrictions since lockdowns were re-imposed


Hello and welcome to our live coverage of coronavirus developments this Friday morning.
We’ll bring you all the latest as it happens throughout the day.

Latest developments in the UK and around the world

Here are some of this morning's key developments:

  • European Union leaders have stopped short of banning vaccine exports after a row with Anglo-Swedish manufacturer AstraZeneca
  • Germany’s third wave of coronavirus will be worse than the first two, the government’s health adviser has warned
  • The US government has said it will give the Palestinians $15m (£11m) in aid to assist with the Covid-19 response in the West Bank and Gaza Strip
  • Mexico has officially surpassed the figure of 200,000 Covid-19 related deaths, becoming the third country to do so after the United States and Brazil
  • "Stay-local" rules will lift in Wales from tomorrow and unrestricted travel within its borders will be allowed
  • UK Chancellor Rishi Sunak has warned bosses that staff may quit if they are not allowed to work from the office after lockdown
  • People who have had Covid-19 before being vaccinated have roughly a six-fold stronger immune response to one dose of the Pfizer jab than those who had never been infected, according to a new study
  • EU leaders have given a lukewarm response to plans by the European commission to potentially block vaccine exports to highly vaccinated countries. In a statement issued after the EU virtual summit late on Thursday , the leaders failed to offer their support for the commission approach, instead saying they backed “global value chains” and reaffirmed that “companies must ensure predictability of their vaccine production and respect contractual delivery deadlines”.
  • The EU commission president, Ursula von der Leyen, advocated support for the plan to block vaccine exports if necessary: “While remaining open, the EU needs to ensure Europeans get a fair share of vaccines,” she tweeted.
  • Germany’s chancellor, Angela Merkel, said while the EU had to “provide [for] our own population” the bloc would not damage the supply chains necessary for the production and distribution of vaccines.
  • France’s president, Emmanuel Macron, used a press conference after the meeting to criticise the British media: “Every day, when I read the press across the Channel, they make a case against us saying that it is the EU that is being selfish. This is false!” he said.
  • Germany is expected to declare France a high-risk zone for coronavirus on Friday. It comes as the number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Germany increased by 21,573 to 2,734,753, data from the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) for infectious diseases showed on Friday.
  • In England, more than 40,600 people have been likely infected with coronavirus while being treated in hospital for another reason, raising concerns about the NHS’s inability to protect them.
  • Joe Biden announced he had doubled his administration’s vaccination goal to 200m shots during his first 100 days as president (up until 29 April).
  • Australia on Friday reported its first locally acquired coronavirus case in more than a week, prompting authorities in Queensland to place restrictions on hospitals, retirement homes and disability centres.
  • Moderna has delayed the shipment of 590,400 doses of its vaccine that were due to arrive in Canada this weekend, the federal procurement minister said on Thursday.
  • Colombia has approved emergency use of Johnson & Johnson’s one-shot Covid-19 vaccine, the director of food and drug regulator Invima said as part of a government address on Thursday.


Friday's papers: UK 'plans October booster jab' and pub passport 'fury'

Coronavirus continues to dominate the newspaper front pages, and Friday's are no different.
The UK is planning to offer a booster jab in October to protect against newer strains of Covid, reports the i newspaper . It also says drive-through centres will be created for under-50s next month to improve uptake among younger people.

Coronavirus - 26th March 2021 Cb869510

The Guardian says some government insiders believe making Covid certificates compulsory for entry into pubs could help tackle vaccine hesitancy among young people . The paper says one senior source predicted a "stark" fall in uptake when the jab is offered to lower age groups.

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Read more in our paper review here .


Latest around Europe


  • European Union leaders were promised last night by European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen that vaccines would be distributed much faster in the coming months and that 70% of adults would be inoculated by the end of June. The row over AstraZeneca dominated the summit. In theory the EU can now impose controversial plans for tougher export restrictions to countries such as the UK and US, but the Dutch, Belgian and German leaders have made it clear they want to avoid them. France's Emmanuel Macron backs the controls, calling for "an end to naivety".
  • Another important issue for the summit was a complaint by Austria and five other smaller states including Latvia and Bulgaria that they had suffered from the EU’s vaccine distribution system. Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz said he was happy that an additional 10 million doses would be used to ensure fairer delivery in the next three months.
  • Meanwhile, a number of European states are seeing very high infection rates. Romania has imposed weekend curfews for towns where cases are high, and Ukraine has recorded a daily record in the past 24 hours with 18,132 cases.
  • Germany has been recording daily infection rates over 20,000 this week and is imposing new rules for anyone flying in from abroad to require a negative test before departure from Sunday.
  • France reported over 45,000 daily infections late on Thursday and the rising number of patients in intensive care, now 4,709, is almost as high as the last peak in November.
Kitkat
Kitkat

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Post by Kitkat Fri Mar 26 2021, 19:22

'Stay-local' rule in Wales to end from Saturday

Wales will become the first UK nation to ease local travel restrictions since lockdowns were re-imposed in winter.
From Saturday, people will be able to go anywhere in Wales - but they will still be unable to travel to other parts of the UK.
Self-contained tourist accommodation - including many hotels and cottages - will also be able to open tomorrow.
The move by the Welsh government will also see rules on the number of people who can meet outdoors - including in private gardens - eased.
Read more here .

Why a third wave, if so many have been vaccinated?

Nick Triggle - Health Correspondent
Lockdown is slowly beginning to ease across the UK. Next week, the stay-at-home order will be lifted in England and people can start mixing in small groups outdoors.
But with infection rates rising in Europe, the British public is also being warned of the risk of a third wave.
The prime minister himself says it is only a matter of time before the wave from Europe washes up on our shores.
While the outbreaks in Europe have been portrayed as the threat, we should not forget the virus is still lurking here.
Read more from Nick .

Strictest lockdown curbs to lift in England and Wales

It’s the final weekend of the toughest lockdown restrictions across England and Wales. In Wales, a stay-local rule lifts, allowing people to travel anywhere within the country’s borders. In England, two households or up to six people can mix outdoors from Monday.
Conny Wollbrant, of the Behavioural Science Centre at the University of Stirling, has been telling BBC Radio 5 Live people may start to stretch the rules where they live as curbs ease elsewhere.
“It’s quite likely that many people will look at what’s happening elsewhere and they will feel conflicted about what to do and on the basis of this difference they begin to convince themselves about breaking rules,” he says.
Richard Leaf, chief executive of the Lake District National Park, says he thinks people in England will continue to observe lockdown but, from Monday, he predicts more people will travel to the outdoors.
"We haven't really seen much breaking of the lockdown over the past few weeks," he says, adding that people should "plan ahead" for when rules permit visits in England.
Kitkat
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Post by Kitkat Fri Mar 26 2021, 19:28

No immediate plans for Covid passports - Jenrick

Jenrick has also been discussing the issue of vaccine passports on the airwaves this morning, saying there is no "immediate plan" to make an announcement on their use.
"We're looking into the practical issues, the ethical concerns and we're being guided by the best medical and scientific opinion and we will be bringing forward the outcome of that work in the coming weeks," the communities secretary tells Times Radio.
"Our focus at the moment is the vaccine rollout - that has to be our priority."
On the question of the use of vaccine passports internationally, he says: "It is a complex issue... On the international stage, vaccine certification is not entirely within our control and if our citizens want to travel abroad, we'll need to ensure that they are able to do so."

Q&A: What are Wales' lockdown rules?

From 27 March, the five-mile "stay-local" rule will be lifted and unrestricted travel within Wales will be allowed.
It means Wales will be the first UK nation to scrap travel restrictions within country boundaries since the winter.

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But some things remain off-limits. Outdoor hospitality will be considered for reopening on 22 April.
And while the UK government plans to fully reopen foreign travel across the UK from 17 May, Welsh First Minister Mark Drakeford said he was urging ministers to "think very carefully".
Read more here .

Mexico death toll passes 200,000 mark

Will Grant - BBC News, Mexico City
Mexico has now officially surpassed the figure of 200,000 Covid-19-related deaths, becoming the third country to do so after the United States and Brazil.
However, critics point to figure of excess deaths in Mexico and the country’s low rate of testing to argue that the real figure is possibly 50% higher.
Recent figures show that excess deaths in the capital, Mexico City, were up by about 46% at the end of last month. And although the federal government has stopped publishing that figure, others argue that if the number of Mexicans who die at home is taken into account, the country may already be closer to 300,000 deaths.
Either way, the figures remain horrifying and extremely worrying for ordinary people. Many have been forced to go back to work given the bleak economic outlook and are fearful of the spread of the disease, especially the more virulent strains from South America.
The announcement comes as the government of President Andrés Manuel López Obrador has acquired millions of doses of coronavirus vaccines from the US and elsewhere.
But it has been criticised for rolling out its vaccine programme too slowly and often in remote areas which aren’t suffering from the outbreak as badly as the major cities.
Kitkat
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Post by Kitkat Fri Mar 26 2021, 19:32

What are the vaccine passport plans for summer holidays?

The need to get a Covid vaccine certificate before you travel across Europe this summer is closer to becoming reality.
EU leaders are discussing the introduction of a "Digital Green Certificate" in time for Europe's summer. The aim of the EU pass is to get travel moving across borders in time for the holiday season, "without discrimination", but getting it all organised in a short space of time will be a significant challenge.
Some countries, inside and outside the EU, have already announced plans for so-called "vaccine passports":

  • Denmark plans to use its "Coronapas" vaccine passport domestically from Easter; it could later be used for international travel
  • Israel already has a domestic vaccine "Green Pass" system up and running, via an app, and this is opening up opportunities for international travel
  • Estonia is planning to start issuing digital certificates in the form of a QR code, showing proof of vaccination, by the end of April, and says it has the system in place to join the EU's certificate system from day one
  • In the UK, although foreign holidays are not currently allowed , the role vaccine passports could play in travel is being discussed

Read more here.

NI Catholic churches make cautious reopening

Catholic churches across Northern Ireland have reopened in a "cautious and careful" return to public worship.
Derry priest Rev Michael Canny said he was "delighted" to be reopening in time for Easter, but stressed that a lot of care was needed.
The Church of Ireland, Methodist and Presbyterian Churches in Northern Ireland will resume in-person services from Good Friday, 2 April.
Read more here .

Chancellor warns bosses: People may quit if forced to work from home

Chancellor Rishi Sunak has issued a warning to company bosses who force staff to work entirely from home as the economy recovers from the pandemic.
Sunak told the Daily Telegraph employees would "vote with their feet" and could consider leaving for a rival if made to work from home full time.
Championing the role of the office, he said: "You can't beat the spontaneity, the team building, the culture that you create in a firm or an organisation from people actually spending physical time together."
A number of companies have announced plans to close offices prompting fears for city centres.
Read more here .
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Post by Kitkat Fri Mar 26 2021, 19:36

Poland sets new infection record for third day in a row

Adam Easton - Warsaw Correspondent
Poland has reported 35,143 new cases, the third record-breaking day in a row and the highest daily rise since the pandemic began, the health ministry has said.
The number of infections was up 35% from the number reported one week ago, as Poland’s third coronavirus wave continues to gain momentum. There were 443 virus-related deaths, the health ministry said.
Poland’s third wave is not expected to peak until the beginning of April. Health ministry officials attribute the spike in infections to the highly contagious UK variant, which is responsible for 80% of all new cases.
Heightened restrictions take effect on Saturday with kindergartens, large DIY/furniture stores and hairdressers closing for two weeks. Numbers will be further reduced in supermarkets and churches. Officials have urged Poles to work from home and not travel for Easter.
The measures are in addition to a partial national lockdown introduced last weekend that closed shopping centres, hotels, cultural and sporting facilities.
There are now more patients in hospital and more people on ventilators than at any time since the start of the pandemic and hospitals are experiencing shortages, not just of equipment, but trained staff.
In total, Poland has reported more than two million cases and some 51,000 virus-related deaths. In contrast, Germany - which has more than double the population of Poland - has registered just over 75,000 deaths.

Germany's third wave 'could be worse' than first two

Jenny Hill - BBC Berlin correspondent
There are indications that Germany’s third wave will be worse than the first two, the government’s health adviser has warned.
Lothar Wieler, who runs the Robert Koch Institute for disease control, has said that, if the country doesn’t do more to slow infection, it’s possible that daily case numbers could rise to 100,000.
Prof Wieler was speaking alongside Health Minister Jens Spahn at a press conference in Berlin. Both men appealed to Germans not to travel within the country or abroad over the Easter holidays.
Germany registered 21,573 new infections and 183 deaths in the last 24 hrs. The seven-day incidence rate has risen to 119 per 100,000 inhabitants, while the reproduction figure R is at 1.08.

Analysis: Nine in 10 say they self-isolate

Robert Cuffe - BBC head of statistics
One set of figures from the Office for National Statistics this morning need a health warning, but are still worth attention.
They contacted people in England who had tested positive or were contacts of people who tested positive.
The law says that these people need to isolate fully for 10 days: no visitors or leaving the house except for a very limited set of reasons.
Roughly 90% of respondents said they had completely self-isolated for 10 days.
The health warning is that people often give the answer they think they’re supposed to give.
If the question is asking how often you’ve broken the law recently, you might be tempted to gloss over the jog that you did in the park at midnight that, technically, is illegal.
So it may be an overestimate of how many people actually did isolate fully. This is a difficult area to get good answers.
But it does raise the possibility that the numbers that had been doing the rounds in the past (lower than 20%) might be on the low side.
Kitkat
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Post by Kitkat Fri Mar 26 2021, 19:44

People who have had Covid had six times better response to vaccine - study

Rachel Schraer - BBC Health Reporter
Health workers who had Covid-19 before being vaccinated had roughly a six-fold stronger immune response to one dose of the Pfizer jab than those who had never been infected.
The study, funded by the Department of Health and Social Care, was based on 237 people in an extension of Public Health England’s Siren study of healthcare workers.
For people who have not had Covid, the first dose provided protection equivalent to having the virus.
However, a second dose allowed them to catch up with previously infected vaccinated people.
People with infection-acquired immunity, plus a single dose of the vaccine, were better protected against variants of concern than people given a single dose having never had Covid.
This implied a second booster dose could provide better protection against the virus as it mutates.
The researchers said this emphasised the importance of getting the second dose of the vaccine when offered it.
And they stressed it was still important for people who have had Covid in the past because the second dose was likely to provide broader and longer-term protection, including against variants.

Which countries are on the red list?

France could go on the UK's "red list" of countries from which entry to the UK is banned, Boris Johnson has said.
The prime minister said the decision may have to be taken "very soon", amid concerns about the spread across mainland Europe of potential vaccine-resistant Covid variants.
If someone has been in or through any red list countries in the previous 10 days, they will be refused entry to the UK.
An exception is made for British or Irish passport-holders - or people with UK residence rights - but they must first pay to quarantine in a government-approved hotel for 10 days.
Read more about the red list here .

Kenya imposes strict measures to curb Covid surge

Ferdinand Omondi - BBC News, Nairobi
Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta has banned all inland travel in and out of five counties, including the capital Nairobi, to stop a surge of Covid-19 cases.
No road, rail or air transport will be allowed until further notice, Kenyatta said.
He declared Nairobi, Kajiado, Kiambu, Machakos and Nakuru counties to be "disease-infested zones."
All in-person meetings in the counties have been banned, the sale of alcohol restricted, indoor dining shut, and a curfew will operate between 20:00 and 04:00.
International travel will continue on condition that all passengers present proof of a negative test.
Kitkat
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Post by Kitkat Fri Mar 26 2021, 19:48

Coronavirus cases levelling off across UK

As we told you a short time ago, the percentage of people testing positive for coronavirus has levelled off in England, Wales and Northern Ireland - and has risen in Scotland.
According to the ONS analysis , which tests a random sample of adults and children in the community, infections remain at a low level after falling steeply since January.
It estimates that in the week up to 20 March:

  • 1 in 340 people in England had coronavirus, or 0.3%
  • 1 in 450 in Wales, or 0.2%
  • 1 in 320 in Northern Ireland, or 0.3%
  • 1 in 240 in Scotland, or 0.4%


At the height of the winter peak, the percentage of people testing positive was around 2% in most of the UK.

UK's latest R number is 0.7 to 0.9

The UK's reproduction number or R number - the rate at which one person infected with coronavirus passes it on to someone else - is estimated to be 0.7 to 0.9, according to government figures .
It's narrowed slightly from last week when it was 0.6 to 0.9.
But this week's R number still means the epidemic is shrinking because it's below 1.
Read more about what the R number is and how it is calculated here .

Borders tightened as Germany battles third wave

Germany could see 100,000 infections a day if the third wave of coronavirus spreads unchecked, the head of the country's respected Robert Koch Institute has warned.
With infections running at more than 20,000 a day, Health Minister Jens Spahn warned: "If this continues unchecked we run the risk of our health system hitting breaking point in April."
Officials fear the third wave could be harder to curb than the first two.
It's led the French foreign minister to say random checks and compulsory tests will be enforced on the border with France because "the pandemic in Germany is exploding faster than they thought".
Negative tests will also be required for arrivals at German airports from Tuesday.
Around 10% of Germans have now received at least a first vaccine dose, below the US and UK.
Germany is among a number of European countries where Covid infections have been rising fast this week.
Cases are also up in Poland by 35%, and health officials in both countries say the spread of the UK variant is behind the surge.
France has also seen a big increase in cases, and German Chancellor Angela Merkel has said it will be classed as a high-risk zone.
Read more here .
Kitkat
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Post by Kitkat Fri Mar 26 2021, 19:51

Two care home staff arrested over Covid-19 outbreak

Police have arrested two care home staff in connection with an outbreak of Covid-19 at a care home in Devon.
Nine deaths have been reported at the Holmesley Care Home in Sidmouth since 25 February.
All the deaths are believed to be related to an outbreak of the virus , said Devon and Cornwall Police.
A woman, 57, from Sidmouth, and a man, 30, from Exeter, have been arrested on suspicion of wilful neglect, the force confirmed.
Officers are leading the investigation in partnership with health watchdog the Care Quality Commission.

'High risk' travellers to Irish Republic must isolate in hotels

Mandatory hotel quarantine is now in place for all travellers arriving into the Republic of Ireland from 33 countries deemed "high risk" for Covid-19 transmission.
Passengers must pre-book and pay for a 12-night stay at one of a number of dedicated hotels across the country.
The time period could be reduced if someone receives a negative Covid-19 test on day 10 of quarantine.
The 33 countries designated as "high risk" are mainly in South America and Africa.
Austria is also on the list, which is subject to change at any time.
The cost of a 12-night stay is €1,875 (£1,614) for one person, €625 (£535) for another adult (or child aged over 12) sharing the room, €360 (£308) for a child aged four to 12, with no charge for infants.
Failure to comply could result in a fine of up to €2,000 (£1,700) or a month in prison.

Breaking News 

Germany lists France as 'high-risk' Covid area

Germany's public health agency has officially listed France as a high-risk Covid area, the AFP news agency reports, as the number of cases there have been steadily climbing in recent weeks.
Earlier, French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said random checks and compulsory tests would be enforced on the border between France and Germany because "the pandemic in Germany is exploding faster than they thought".
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Post by Kitkat Fri Mar 26 2021, 19:54

Germany tightens entry conditions from France

Germany has now classified France as a high-risk zone, which means travellers need to show a recent negative Covid test and quarantine to enter the country.
France is now considered "at particularly high risk of infection due to a particularly high number of cases", the country's Robert Koch Institute for infectious diseases has said.
France reported more than 45,000 daily infections late on Thursday. Nineteen areas of the country have been placed under lockdown, and more than 4,700 people are now being treated in intensive care.
Europe's Covid vaccine drive has generally speaking started slowly , partly because of delivery delays, but France is aiming to speed up its vaccination campaign and is due to start vaccinating people aged 70-75 from Saturday.
Earlier, German officials said if their country did not do more to slow down the number of infections, daily case numbers could rise to 100,000.

Guernsey's second wave 'over' with zero active cases

Guernsey's second wave of coronavirus has been declared "over" , with no known active cases on the island.
The island's director of public health, Dr Nicola Brink, confirmed the last case no longer had an "active infection", but remains in the Princess Elizabeth Hospital.
The majority of Guernsey's lockdown restrictions were lifted on Monday, with no new cases found for 27 days.
Dr Brink said "we can now officially say that the second wave is now over", adding that this is "a good day for us, but of course we hope the person [in hospital] has a speedy recovery".
But she emphasised the need for islanders experiencing Covid-19 symptoms to stay at home and contact the States of Guernsey clinical helpline or their GP to report their symptoms.
"If someone comes forward and tests positive they're not ruining anything for us, they're helping their community," she said.
There have been 821 coronavirus cases since March 2020, with 14 confirmed and three presumptive deaths.

Another 6,187 test for positive for Covid in the UK

According the latest government daily figures , 6,187 people have tested positive for coronavirus in the UK.
It brings the total number of people with a positive Covid-19 virus test result to 4,325,315

A further 70 Covid deaths in the UK

Another 70 people in the UK have died within 28 days of receiving a positive test result for Covid-19, according to the government's daily figures.
It brings the total number of deaths of people with Covid to 126,515.
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Post by Kitkat Fri Mar 26 2021, 20:02

England's shops to be allowed to open longer

Allowing shops in England to stay open until 22:00 six days a week will help people return to high streets safely, Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick has said.
Announcing changes to licencing, he said longer opening would give people greater flexibility to avoid peak times and ease transport pressures when non-essential shops open on 12 April at the earliest.
The government is also extending flexible working hours on construction sites, allowing food deliveries to supermarkets over more time periods, and keeping the flexibility for pubs and restaurants to put up marquees to help increase seating capacity.
Mr Jenrick said the move would help with "protecting jobs, reducing pressure on public transport and supporting people and communities to continue to visit their high streets safely and shop locally".

Devon warns against 'illegal' early visitors


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British holidaymakers are being warned "not to put the summer at risk" by travelling to the South West of England before lockdown restrictions ease.
Under the UK government's roadmap, 12 April is the earliest date attractions and some self-contained accommodation is allowed to open.
Devon County Council said it would give tourists a warm welcome "when the guidelines allow, but not before", warning visitors it is "illegal" and "dangerous" to travel down any earlier.
"After all our hard work to keep Covid-19 cases in Devon so low, we do not want to risk things now," said Keri Denton, Devon County Council's head of economy, skills and enterprise.

Analysis: The threat is already on UK shores

Nick Triggle - Health Correspondent
Lockdown is, step-by-step, beginning to ease across the UK. But with infection rates rising in Europe, the British public is also being warned of the risk of a third wave.
While the outbreaks in Europe have been portrayed as the threat, we should not forget the virus is still lurking here.
Infection rates have dropped dramatically since the turn of the year - there has been a 12-fold fall in daily cases being reported.
But that still leaves more than enough infection circulating that could easily take off.
The Office for National Statistics estimates that, along with asymptomatic cases, there could be more than 100,000 infectious people out there.
Already there are signs of a slight increase in cases among children following the return to schools in England.
Read more here.
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Post by Kitkat Fri Mar 26 2021, 20:08

Hauliers from Europe 'to be tested from 6 April'

Caroline Davies - Transport correspondent

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We heard earlier today that hauliers travelling from continental Europe have been told that they will be required to take a Covid test .
We're now hearing more - an industry source has said they have been told that the measures are expected to start on 6 April onwards.
All lorry and van drivers are required to take the test if they stay in the UK for more than 48 hours.
They will need to get tested within 48 hours of arriving and will also be required to complete a passenger locator form so that they can be contacted while in the UK.
The tests will be free and available at the existing government haulier sites previously set up to test drivers travelling out of the UK to certain European countries that require them, such as Denmark or Germany.
Those who don’t comply have been warned they can expect to be fined £2,000. If drivers stay for longer, a second test is required within five days of arrival. If drivers stay longer than five days, they are required to take a third test within eight days of arrival.
Drivers arriving from the EU to make deliveries should only leave their cabs for essential purposes, which include eating and using washing facilities.
The Department for Transport has previously said it was carefully monitoring the increase in cases in Europe and would keep all measures under review.

What's been happening today?

We’ll be ending our live coverage for today shortly but, before we go, here’s a reminder of today’s main coronavirus headlines from the UK and around the world:

  • The number of people testing positive for coronavirus is levelling off in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, and risen in Scotland, ONS analysis shows
  • But coronavirus infection levels in secondary school-age children have risen slightly in England, according to the ONS
  • "Stay-local" rules will lift in Wales from tomorrow and unrestricted travel within its borders will be allowed
  • People who have had Covid-19 before being vaccinated have [url=https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/live/uk-56534975?ns_mchannel=social&ns_source=twitter&ns_campaign=bbc_live&ns_linkname=605dc71972dccf02d9bd2dd2%26People who have had Covid had six times better response to vaccine -]roughly a six-fold stronger immune response to one dose[/url] of the Pfizer jab than those who had never been infected, according to a new study
  • Germany is tightening its borders amid fears that a third wave of coronavirus could be harder to curb than the first two
  • France’s foreign minister, Jean-Yves Le Drian, has accused the UK of "blackmail" over its handling of coronavirus vaccine exports
  • Mexico has officially [url=https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/live/uk-56534975?ns_mchannel=social&ns_source=twitter&ns_campaign=bbc_live&ns_linkname=605daa4072dccf02d9bd2d90%26Mexico death toll passes 200%2C000]surpassed the figure of 200,000 Covid-19-related deaths[/url], becoming the third country to do so after the United States and Brazil
  • Facebook, Twitter and Google have been urged by a US lawmaker to ban a dozen people who it’s claimed are spreading the vast majority of disinformation about Covid vaccinations


Goodbye and thanks for reading

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    Current date/time is Mon May 17 2021, 13:54