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SAGE cast doubts over Home Secretary’s quarantine plans

4th Jun 20 1:40 pm

The Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) have cast doubt over the Home Secretary Priti Patel’s blanket quarantine effectiveness for those who visit the UK.

Professor Robert Dingwall, a member of a sub-group of Sage who advise the government, told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, “We are not seeing new clusters that are taking off from people who have been travelling abroad.

“I think we would really need to get the level in this country significantly further down before quarantine started to become a useful measure.

“That I think, even then, we would have to see something that is targeted on countries with a significantly higher level of community transmission than ourselves – and there aren’t too many of those around, I’m afraid.”

Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary said the plans would, “do untold damage to British tourism.

“We don’t understand, as an industry, why the British Government doesn’t follow the European science that says it is perfectly OK to fly as long as you all wear face masks,” he said.

From Monday 8 June any traveller who flouts the law in the UK can face a fine of up to £1,000 or prosecution, and the police will be allowed to use “reasonable force.”

He added, “If you’re a holiday destination in Europe in a country that has worked really hard to get its levels of community transmission down and you’re perhaps looking forward to seeing the end of the virus circulating, apart from in isolated outbreaks, then you have to wonder would they really want to welcome a load of British tourists from a country which hasn’t fully got this virus under control yet?”

Road haulage and freight workers will be exempt from the restrictions.

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