Britain entering second wave of coronavirus, Johnson warns

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson

LONDON — Britain is entering the second wave of coronavirus, warned Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Thursday as he prepared to impose sweeping nationwide measures to curb the spread of coronavirus in the country.

The British premier said he did not "want to go into bigger lockdown measures" but that tighter social distancing rules might be necessary.

According to BBC, a new three-tiered set of restrictions is being considered.

The plan would aim to avoid a national lockdown but could stop household-to-household contact.

The first tier would be the level of measures currently in place in most parts of England now — with social distancing the key aspect.

The second tier would involve what is currently being imposed in north-east England — curfews on hospitality venues and a ban on meetings between households.

The final third tier would involve stricter lockdown measures.

Speaking during a visit to Oxfordshire, Johnson said: “We are now seeing a second wave coming in. We’ve seen it in France, in Spain, across Europe. It’s been absolutely inevitable, I’m afraid, that we would see it in this country.”

He added: “We want to keep the schools open — that’s going to happen. And we’ll try and keep all parts of the economy open, as far as we possibly can. I don’t think anybody wants to go into a second lockdown.

“But clearly, when you look at what is happening, you’ve got to wonder whether we need to go further than the rule of six that we brought in on Monday. We’ll be looking at the local lockdowns we’ve got in large parts of the country now, and see what we can do to intensify things.”

With cases doubling in the space of a week and positive tests surpassing 4,000 on Friday, Downing Street is considering a drastic escalation to create what a government source called a “breathing space”.