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Covid-19 restrictions in Scotland have been increased in response to a new strain of the virus

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon announced on Saturday that mainland Scotland would be classified in Level 4 – the toughest level – and the islands will enter Level 3 from Boxing Day

All non-essential retail and hospitality businesses must be closed under the strictest restrictions

The First Minister announced the move after a transmittable strain of virus was discovered in the UK, along with a reduction in the window if the Scots were to move by Christmas by April 25 December can mix indoors

Ms. Sturgeon said the delivery of the news “makes me cry” and said, “I share this feeling of tiredness and demoralization about it

“If this new strain didn’t exist, I wouldn’t be standing here announcing this now, as our current fall levels are actually quite stable due to the level we have chosen”

“This is a preventative measure as we know there is a faster transferring burden and so we act preventively”

“Everything we have learned about this virus says that you do – you act quickly and don’t regret it later, and that’s exactly what we want to do””

The First Minister said she intends to put the measures into effect for three weeks from Boxing Day, but opposition politicians have questioned the schedule

National clinical director Professor Jason Leitch also told a Holyrood committee this week that more may need to be done to suppress the new strain

He said it was “really, very, very difficult” to keep the reproduction number below 1, adding, “It would go back to March rather than November”

The return of personal school has been delayed – with the exception of the children of key workers – as classes on 11th January starts online and all schools are expected to start on January 18 January take physical education again

Ms. Sturgeon said the level 4 restrictions should be reviewed after two weeks

Police Scotland will double its presence along the border with England after the First Minister announced stricter coronavirus restrictions

Chief Constable Lain Livingstone said “high visibility patrols” on streets are used to “deter anyone considering breaking coronavirus travel restrictions at night”

He added that it was “not appropriate or proportionate for officials to establish checkpoints or roadblocks just to enforce travel restrictions”

“These highly visible patrols are being proactively deployed on our road networks to continue our operations and ensure that drivers and vehicles are in good working order

“The patrols will also deter anyone considering breaking coronavirus travel restrictions”

Current restrictions mean it is illegal to travel to or leave level 3 or 4 community areas without a valid exception

The police have the power to fine money breakers up to £ 60 but this will be cut in half to £ 30 if paid within 28 days

According to current plans, the Christmas holidays will be for the majority of students by 11 January extended, although schools continue to reopen on schedule for the most vulnerable and key workers’ children

However, classes will take place online at least in the first week of the new semester, Ms. Sturgeon has announced

She said: “After that, provided we are confident that we have the virus under control, we will try to fully reopen schools

“But at least until the 18th January schools will only go online except for the children of key workers and the most vulnerable ”

All restaurants, bars and other restaurants are closed However, hotels and other accommodation providers can still serve food to qualified guests, e.g. B. for key or exempt employees who stay on their premises until 10:00 p.m.

Places of worship can be opened with a limited number (20 people), while a maximum of 15 people are permitted for weddings / civil partnerships and a limit of 15 people applies for funerals and guards

Early learning and childcare can remain open There are reinforced and targeted protective measures

Nicola Sturgeon said Level 0 was “broadly similar” to the position in Scotland in August, “when the virus was very suppressed but still poses a threat”” ”

She added: “At this level we could meet 8 people from 3 households indoors and most companies would be open, albeit with security measures” ”

At level 1 there are a little more restrictions – the number of house meetings indoors is reduced to six people from two households

The First Minister said: “This is similar to the situation we were in in mid-September when cases started to rise again, but the prevalence was still quite low” ”

The First Minister said: “Levels 2 and 3 should apply at times like now when the transmission is higher and increasing” ”

She said: “Level 2 includes restrictions similar to those currently in place outside the central belt – with restrictions on hospitality and without gatherings in people’s homes” ”

Currently, pubs, bars, restaurants and cafes in other parts of Scotland are only allowed to serve indoor customers between 6am and 6pm, with alcohol being prohibited inside However, alcoholic drinks can be served outside until 10 p.m.

Level 3 is largely similar to the stricter restrictions currently in place on the central belt, with much of the hospitality completely closed

Since the 9 October bars and licensed restaurants in five health authority areas – Greater Glasgow and Clyde, Lanarkshire, Ayrshire and Arran, Lothian and Forth Valley – are forced to close to all but take-out

Ms. Sturgeon added: “There are some key differences, however – for example, we allow restaurants on level 3 to be at least partially open

“Levels 2 and 3 should apply for relatively short periods of time in order to bring the transmission under control” ”

The Prime Minister said the level 4 restrictions were “closer to a complete lockdown” as things like non-essential stores would be closed

She said: “We would not use [Level 4] unless it is absolutely necessary – would apply if the transmission rates are very high or threatened with appropriate pressure on the NHS” ”

Please refer to the Scottish Government website for full details of the restrictions at each level

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Tier 4 Scotland

World News – UK – Boxing Day: Mainland Scotland enters Tier 4 restrictions – that’s it for you