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UK: Second Lockdown underway. Fines increased to £10,000

Will the madness never end? From September 22nd, areas across the North of England and the Midlands will see additional restrictions imposed. People won’t be allowed to socialise with anyone outside their households, cafes, pubs and restaurants will be restricted to table service only and, in some areas, restaurants, pubs and cinemas will be forced to close at 10pm. The Telegraph has more.

Local lockdowns are being put into place across England in a bid to stop a “second wave” of coronavirus, on top of the ‘rule of six’ that applies nationwide.

The Government imposed new restrictions on the areas of Merseyside, Warrington, Halton and Lancashire on Friday, September 18.

Similar restrictions were also announced for Wolverhampton and Oadby & Wigston in the Midlands, along with the areas of Bradford, Kirklees and Calderdale in West Yorkshire.

From Tuesday, September 22 onwards, residents in these areas will no longer be allowed to socialise with other people outside of their own households or their support bubble in private homes and gardens.

Hospitality for food and drink will be restricted to table service only and restaurants, pubs, and cinemas are required to close between 10pm and 5am.

Birmingham, Greater Manchester, Bolton and parts of the North East are also among the areas under local lockdown.

The Government claims these additional restrictions are necessary because of the rising number of cases in these areas – Sunderland now has an incidence rate of 103 per 100,000, while South Tyneside, Gateshead and Newcastle have a rate of 70. But, of course, 91% of these “cases” are likely to be false positives and of the remaining 9%, more than half won’t be infectious. (See yesterday’s post on Matt Hancock’s poor failure to understand the false positive rate for chapter and verse). The Telegraph has a comprehensive breakdown of what restrictions apply in your area.

Meanwhile, the Sunday Times reports that people who fail to self-isolate will face fines of £10,000.

The Government is set to introduce fines of up to £10,000 for people who breach self-isolation rules as Britain steps up preparations for a second wave of COVID-19.

People on low incomes will be paid £500 to self-isolate at home in a “carrot and stick” approach to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

The fines for breaching self-isolation rules will start at £1,000 – in line with the penalty for breaking quarantine after international travel – but could increase to £10,000 for repeat offences.

Daily infections rose to a four-month high of 4,422 yesterday, and Boris Johnson is expected to make a television address to the nation on Tuesday to announce a further tightening of restrictions on ordinary life.

According to the Sunday Times, Boris is due to announce further nationwide restrictions in a televised address on Tuesday, with the only undecided thing being the extent to which they’ll apply to businesses. Hospitality industry leaders have warned the Government that the sector is on the verge of crisis, with almost a million jobs at risk.

Pub chains are calling on the chancellor to maintain his furlough scheme, which is due to run out at the end of October; extend the cut in VAT well into next year; and slash beer duty.

Some 900,000 workers in the hospitality sector are still on furlough, with many expected to lose their jobs next month.

Tim Martin, the boss of JD Wetherspoon, which employs 43,000 people in its pubs and hotels, said many smaller venues had perished after the first lockdown. He said further restrictions would be “even more devastating”.

And, of course, Rasputin is in the wings, urging the Prime Minister on to even greater heights of destruction. Disgraced ex-SAGE member Neil Ferguson popped up on the radio yesterday to warn Boris that if he doesn’t order a severe second lockdown immediately people will die.

“If we leave it another two to four weeks we will be back at levels we were seeing more like mid-March. That’s clearly going to cause deaths because people will be hospitalised,” he told the BBC’s Today programme.

As George Santayana said, those who cannot learn from the mistakes of the past are doomed to repeat them.

Source: Lockdown Sceptics