PM Johnson says second wave of virus inevitable, new restrictions possible

Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson attends a national service of remembrance at the National Memorial Arboretum in Alrewas central England

Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson attends a national service of remembrance at the National Memorial Arboretum in Alrewas central England

Johnson said he wanted to avoid a second national lockdown, which he has said would be "financially disastrous", calling it "the last thing anybody wants".

"It is absolutely, I'm afraid, inevitable that we will see it in this country", Johnson said.

Public Health England (PHE) warned that data published on Friday could be a sign of "far worse things to come", as the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said cases are thought to have nearly doubled in a week to 6,000-a-day in England.

Julian Tang, an honorary associate professor in respiratory sciences at the University of Leicester, said the various measures in place or being considered can act as a "firebreak" in stopping the spread of the virus to the more susceptible groups of the population.

"I just don't see what we lose by talking to each other", he said.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said it was inevitable the country would see a second wave of coronavirus infections and while he did not want a second national lockdown, the government may need to introduce new restrictions.

"But as we look at this particular curve and what is happening now, clearly we are going to keep everything under review".

The final third tier would involve stricter lockdown measure.

"The last line of defence is full national action, and I don't want to see that but we will do what is necessary to keep people safe in a very hard pandemic".

The Prime Minister, his every footstep followed by a personal protective equipment-wearing press pack, told the scientists: "In an ideal world, we would have this running right now". Possible measures being considered under this so-called "circuit break" are asking some hospitality businesses to close, or limiting opening hours, for a period - potentially two weeks.

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New local coronavirus restrictions have been announced for large parts of the North West, Midlands, and West Yorkshire to "curb rising infection rates" in England.

Food and drink venues will only be allowed to serve at tables, while pubs and bars will be shut early at 10pm.

The new rules do not apply to Bolton or Greater Manchester, where separate restrictions are already in place. After that, these local lockdowns.

The number of coronavirus cases in Britain rose by 4,322 on Friday with 27 more deaths as the country is struggling to cope with test shortages.

Although deaths are now low, experts expect them to rise, with Sage saying the R number "shows that we are moving to wider spread growth in transmission at a faster rate".

Last week, the R number was said to be between 1.0 and 1.2.

The United Kingdom was reported to be considering whether to impose a new lockdown across the country, after new COVID-19 cases nearly doubled to 6,000 a day, hospital admissions rose and infection rates soared across parts of northern England and London.

The figures do not include people staying in hospitals or care homes.

Public Health England medical director Yvonne Doyle said there were "clear signs" of a spread of the virus across all age groups, and a rise in hospital admissions of older people.

"This could be a warning of far worse things to come".

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