The British government is reportedly looking into halting all travel beyond the M25 and enforcing a state home policy for all over-fifties to as part of “nuclear plans” to prevent a second lockdown on a national scale amid rising new coronavirus cases.
Boris Johnson has ordered officials to consider introducing new extreme measures in order to prevent another lockdown of the UK economy, the Sunday Times reported.
If the R-rate increases in the capital, overnight stays could be prohibited and all travel in and out of London stopped.
[“The M25] would be the border point”, an unnamed government insider told the paper.
“Another national lockdown is like our nuclear deterrent — we will never rule it out but it should be the very last resort in the fight against Covid", a No.10 source said.
Other measures also include “personalised risk scores” for those aged from 50 and 70, an increase of 2.2 million people who have been told to be involved in the government's shielding program which was lifted on Saturday for those in England, Scotland and Northern Ireland.
In Wales, shielding for vulnerable people will stay in place until 16 August.
The PM is said to have hosted a "war games" session with Chancellor Rishi Sunak on Wednesday to go assess options of maintaining economic activity if a second coronavirus wave happens.
This comes as the easing of lockdown measures is delayed due to local flare-ups in parts of the North. The government also backtracked on a pledge to test all care home residents routinely in the summer due to "unexpected delays".
New cases of coronavirus are said to be increasing for the first time since May and experts have suggested that the government might have to order the closure of pubs again, which have been opened in England since 4 July, if schools reopen in September.
Professor Graham Medley, a member of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE), said that a “trade off” may have to take place.
Chief medical officer Professor Chris Whitty said that the UK was “near the limit” for reopening social activity from the coronavirus lockdown.