UK to move to highest coronavirus alert level as full lockdowns loom

UK to move to highest coronavirus alert level as full lockdowns loom

Boris Johnson to make TV announcement on Monday night after pressure to tackle soaring infection rate

The government is expected to announce new steps to control the spread of coronavirus, as the chief medical officers recommended that the UK move to the highest coronavirus alert level.

Boris Johnson is due to make a TV address on Monday evening where he is set to announce mass school closures and tight lockdown restrictions. MPs will be recalled to parliament from Wednesday.

In a joint statement, the UK’s four chief medical officers said the alert level should be moved to the maximum of five, warning that without action there was a risk of the NHS “in several areas” being overwhelmed.

They said: “Cases are rising almost everywhere, in much of the country driven by the new more transmissible variant. We are not confident that the NHS can handle a further sustained rise in cases and without further action there is a material risk of the NHS in several areas being overwhelmed over the next 21 days.”