Concern for Portugal holidays as cases rise
Britons in Portugal, or those with a holiday booked, could be in for disappointment as Covid-19 cases in the country rise once again.
Figures published yesterday show the number of cases per 100,000 over seven days – the metric used by the Government to determine which country is on the UK’s travel corridors list – is now at 16.5.
The UK Government has revealed that 20 cases per 100,000 over seven days is the threshold after which travel corridors are reassessed.
Grant Shapps announced on Thursday that Switzerland, the Czech Republic and Jamaica have been removed from the UK’s travel corridors list after crossing this threshold. Anyone returning from these countries must now go into quarantine for 14 days. Cuba, where cases are on the decline, has been given the green light for holidays.
Yesterday, Portugal recorded 401 cases of Covid-19, the highest tally since July 11. The rise comes just one week after Portugal was removed from the UK’s quarantine list, to the relief of tourist destinations like the Algarve, reliant on British holidaymakers.
Grant Shapps, the Transport Secretary, has said that anyone travelling abroad needs to do so with their “eyes open” to the possibility that they may need to go into a 14-day quarantine on their return.
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Fewer than a third of UK arrivals are having tracing forms checked
Fewer than a third of arrivals to the UK are being checked to ensure they have forms to aid test and trace efforts, under targets set for Border Force officials.
It raises the prospect that hundreds of thousands of people have entered the country without the documents being inspected.
Arrivals in the UK from abroad must submit a passenger locator form online beforehand, to be shown at the border either in printed form or on a mobile device.
Question marks over enforcement have also been raised by figures showing that just five people have been fined £100 for breaching their quarantine once back in the UK.
The Telegraph has established there is no surveillance tracking out the levels of infections coming back from holidaymakers from each country, unless they report symptoms and have a test.
Read the full report here.
France sees exponential rise in cases
France has recorded its biggest daily rise in coronavirus infections since March, while President Emmanuel Macron has raised the possibility of another nationwide lockdown.
A further 7,379 cases were confirmed on Friday, bringing the country’s total to 267,077 and making it the largest daily spike since March 31, when 7,578 cases were tallied at the peak of the first wave.
France was seeing an “exponential” rise in cases, the health ministry said, and the surge follows daily increases of 6,111 on Thursday and 5,429 on Wednesday.
But despite the rise, hospital numbers and daily deaths have been relatively stable as younger people less vulnerable to the virus make up most of the new cases, the ministry said.
Deaths rose by 20 on Friday, bringing France’s overall death toll to 30,596.
Shortly before Friday’s figures were released, Mr Macron said a second national lockdown could not be ruled out if infections spiralled out of control.
“We’re doing everything to avoid another lockdown, and in particular a nationwide lockdown,” he said, but added that it couldn’t be ruled out.
“Containment is the crudest of measures to fight against a virus,” said Mr Macron, urging people to be “collectively very rigorous”.
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Where else are cases on the rise?
Travel expert Paul Charles has crunched the numbers, and shows the countries in the ‘red’, ‘amber’, or ‘green’ when it comes to cases per 100,000.
What is the situation in Portugal?
Here’s a look at the case numbers in Portugal
The number of Covid-19 cases per 100,000 in Portugal, over seven days cumulative, has been:
Police warn of antisocial behaviour in Cornwall and Dorset ahead of bank holiday
Thousands of holidaymakers are expected to visit the counties of Dorset, Devon and Cornwall this weekend, with police expecting busy roads and increased demand on emergency services.
Incidents of littering, fly-tipping and wild camping in the region have risen 29 per cent on last year, while anti-social behaviour has gone up 20 per cent.
Devon and Cornwall Police said the latest figures for August show 999 call demand remaining at record levels with a 13 per cent increase in calls compared with the same period in 2019.
A spokesperson for Dorset Police told the Dorset Echo:
“Many thousands of visitors, some already in the region, are expected to be residing in the county over the three-day holiday with congested roads and demand on all emergency services resources expected to be high. Tourism bosses are already predicting the region is at full capacity.”