Sadiq Khan piles pressure on Boris Johnson to put London on Tier 2 lockdown if cases jump over 100 per 100,000

SADIQ Khan has piled pressure on Boris Johnson to put London on a Tier 2 lockdown order, banning households from mixing indoors, if cases jump over 100 per 100,000.

The London mayor has said it is inevitable that the capital will hit the "trigger point" and be given tougher rules in "the next few days".

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It would mean nearly nine million Londoners would not be able to meet up with friends and family outside of their household anywhere indoors – including in pubs and restaurants.

The capital was only given a "medium" Covid alert level yesterday, when Mr Johnson unveiled his new three tiered approach to local lockdowns

Under the most relaxed Tier 1 rules, Londoners have to follow the 10pm curfew and rule of six, but have no additions measures.

When asked if he expected new restrictions to be brought in, Mr Khan told Sky News: "In London, we're left with no good options."

He claimed that the number of tests available to Londoners had been crashed by the Government and so it was difficult to establish an accurate infection rate.

"We were very angry that between August and September, the Government reduced the number of testing taking place in London by about 43 per cent, so the test numbers have been not very accurate.

"But we do know they've been going up in relation to positive cases.

"We've seen in the last six days a 50 per cent increase in positive cases".

Mr Khan said the number of new cases had jumped from about 500 cases a week in the summer to 8,000 weekly infections now.

He said that it was likely London would hit the "trigger point" of 100 cases per 100,000 in the coming days.

He told Sky News: "Across our city… the average over the last seven days is about 90 per 100,000.

"All the indicators I have, hospital admissions, ICU occupancy, the numbers of older people with cases, the prevalence of the disease, the positivity are all going the wrong direction.

"Which means, I'm afraid, it's inevitable over the course of the next few days London will have passed a trigger point to be in the second tier."

The Government has been careful not to announce a formal "trigger point", saying the decision is based on infection rates and the speed at which they are accelerating.

But the PM said yesterday designations for local areas were subject to change depending on infection rates.

Mr Khan has been calling for further restrictions on London for a number of weeks, as restrictions in a handful of London boroughs climbed over 100.

Richmond had the worst infection rate in the week to October 8, with 130.8 cases per 100,000.

The borough with the lowest infection rate was Bexley, with 51.6 cases per 100,000.

Mr Khan said all of London would go into lockdown "as one" despite the different infection rates across the city.

According to Government figures up to October 8, the London-wide average sits at 78 cases per 100,000.

Other areas, including Manchester, Newcastle and Nottingham, could all face having their Covid alert level escalated from "high" to the toughest "very high", meaning pubs and bars could have to close.

When asked about future measures for London, a spokesperson for No10 said today: "There’s a process for deciding whether further measures are needed in all parts of the country and I don’t think it would be appropriate for me to pre-empt that. 

"We take in a range variety of data including the rate of positive cases, hospital admissions and ICU rates etc.

"We continue to closely monitor the data in all parts of England and where we judge further measures are necessary we haven’t hesitated to act."

 

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