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Covid in Scotland: New five-level regional restrictions go live

Scotland's new Covid restrictions come into force on Monday as England prepares for another national lockdown.

The regional system has five levels but each of the country's 32 local authorities has initially been graded between levels 1 and 3.

 

People under level 3 restrictions have been told to make only essential journeys outside their council area.

The launch comes amid ongoing calls for clarity from the Treasury over the extension to the furlough scheme.

To prevent any confusion around the local levels a postcode tracker has been launched so people can check the regulations - which take effect from 06:00.

Ms Sturgeon said the new system would allow a quick and flexible response, especially in areas where the virus was spreading.

She added: "It's crucial that everyone knows what level their local authority is in and that they stick to the rules in their area.

"The postcode tracker will be a vital tool in helping to ensure this happens."

'Tighter restrictions'

Ms Sturgeon said that while prevalence of the virus was lower in Scotland than in other parts of the UK there could be no room for complacency.

She warned: "No one wants to see tighter restrictions but people can be reassured that, if we need to put in place the protections that come with higher levels, we will not hesitate to do so.

"I also urge everyone to follow two key national restrictions by not mixing with other households inside our homes, and not travelling to or from any part of the country in level 3 unless it is absolutely essential."

Senior school pupils in level 3 areas will also now be required to wear face coverings in class, not just in communal areas.

Deputy first minister John Swinney said students in colleges should do the same as they were in the same "age cohort".

Secondary schools in Dundee are also asking pupils in years S1 to S3 to wear face coverings in the classroom.

Latest figures on Sunday revealed there were 1,148 new Covid cases in the previous 24 hours - 7% of those tested - and six further deaths.

A health board breakdown of positive results confirmed NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde (443 new cases) , NHS Lanarkshire (253) and NHS Lothian (140) remain the major hotspots.

Mr Swinney has said it would be "foolish" to rule out moving to a nationwide lockdown in future if efforts to suppress the virus were unsuccessful.

He told the BBC's Good Morning Scotland: "If we saw a spread of the virus across the country that was not moving in the right direction, then we would of course look to take more acute measures."

On the subject of extended household groups, Mr Swinney said people in level three areas could continue to visit members of the same household, but he would "urge individuals in that situation to exercise the greatest degree of care and caution".

Source: BBC

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