#Open journalism No news is bad news

Your contributions will help us continue to deliver the stories that are important to you

Support The Journal
Dublin: 9°C Thursday 25 February 2021
Advertisement

'Major incident' declared in Manchester over rising Covid-19 rates

Assistant Chief Constable Nick Bailey said the decision to declare the incident was about protecting the population by aiming to reduce infection rates.

Image: PA Images

A MAJOR INCIDENT has been declared in Greater Manchester over rising Covid-19 infections just as the UK Chancellor’s meal-deal scheme – aimed at encouraging people in Britain to go out more – gets under way.

Sir Richard Leese, Leader of Manchester City Council, urged residents to stay calm after public service leaders decided to increase their readiness as they grapple with the escalating coronavirus transmission rates in the region.

“People should not be alarmed that a major incident has been declared,” he said.

The Labour politician called the move “standard practice for complex situations” and said it would allow a “central command structure” to be created to enable agencies to “draw on extra resources”.

The decision to declare a major incident was taken by the Strategic Coordination Group on the weekend after they met to discuss the increased lockdown restrictions announced last week across parts of the North West.

The new measures forbid people from different households from meeting each other inside their homes or in gardens, while also banning separate households from mixing in pubs, restaurants and other hospitality venues.

Out of the top 20 worst affected local authority areas for Covid-19 infections in England, Greater Manchester boroughs – home to almost 3 million people – comprise more than a third of the list, with seven entries.

Oldham, the second worst affected borough in the country, recorded a seven-day infection rate rise from 41.6 to 62.8 per 100,000 people, with 148 new cases reported in the past week. 

#Open journalism No news is bad news Support The Journal

Your contributions will help us continue to deliver the stories that are important to you

Support us now

It comes as Chancellor Rishi Sunak heralded the start of the Treasury’s Eat Out to Help Out scheme – an offer of half-price meals during August in order to entice people out of their stay-at-home lockdown habits and into restaurants and pubs again after the hospitality sector was badly hit by the pandemic.

Assistant Chief Constable Nick Bailey said: “Recognising that there are multiple localities across Greater Manchester seeing rises in infection rates [we] have taken the decision to declare this a major incident in order to respond as effectively as possible.”

“This will enable us to maximise the capability of agencies across Greater Manchester, including additional resources if required, to instigate a prompt and positive change in direction.”

He said the decision to declare a major incident was about protecting the population by aiming to reduce infection rates and eventually allow the region to return “to as near a state of normality as current times allow”.

About the author:

Press Association

Read next:

COMMENTS (33)

This is YOUR comments community. Stay civil, stay constructive, stay on topic. Please familiarise yourself with our comments policy here before taking part.
write a comment

    Leave a commentcancel