Level three is reached when the “virus is in general circulation”.
It’s been a long, hard, slow fight against the coronavirus pandemic, but the UK looks to be making some progress. Today, the nation’s coronavirus alert level has been officially reduced from level four to level three, as the number of active cases in the UK continues to decrease.
Whereas level four sees “transmission high or rising exponentially”, at level three, the alert system tells us that the “virus is in general circulation”. At this stage, we can see a “gradual relaxation of restrictions”, although this had already begun in the past few weeks with the return of non-essential shops, the ability to form ‘support bubbles’, and guidelines which allow us to congregate outdoors in groups of up to six people.
The UK has been preparing to move to Level 3 since May 17, but it’s only after a recommendation from the nation’s Joint Biosecurity Centre that the change has come, the BBC reports. A joint statement from the chief medical officers of England, Scotland, Wales, and Norther Ireland states that this “does not mean that the pandemic is over”, and warned that localised outbreaks might occur in the coming months.
Whilst this could lead to further lockdown restrictions being relaxed – July 4 is widely presumed to be the next date for easing measures to occur, with outdoor pubs and restaurants and hair salons possibly able to reopen, and overnight stays potentially allowed – it’s vital to note that social distancing must still be practised. Similarly, the wearing of masks on public transport is now compulsory in England, and vigilance should be maintained whilst the virus remains in circulation.
We’ll continue keep you updated with more information about the UK lockdown and pandemic when we have it.