Coronavirus map LIVE: Britain faces war-time food rationing

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North Yorkshire police have already announced the move, and said police will start implementing the checks in the coming days.

Other police forces across the country are expected to follow suit.


It comes after Parliament approved the Government’s Emergency Coronavirus Bill yesterday.

He told FEMAIL: “There’s a risk we’re still not taking this crisis seriously enough when it comes to our food supply.

“There needs to be a big shift in current consumption behaviours, because it’s a matter of weeks before things start to become a real problem if we continue in the same vein.

“And I can see rationing on the horizon. Both wars show us that what the government is doing right now – telling people not to panic buy, to voluntarily curtail consumption – just doesn’t work, sadly.

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Coronavirus news: Boris Johnson could introduce war-time food rationing (Image: Getty)

The Government insists Prince Charles did not receive preferential treatment (Image: Getty)

“It has to be followed up with a clear, government-led rationing system of essential goods.

“This was previously done in collaboration with retailers and it can be replicated again, accompanied by price controls and greater penalties for the worst racketeers and black marketeers.

“Rationing can’t be left up to poor old supermarket checkout staff, who have to deal with anger and arguments – the government must step in.

“The online ration system would also seem likely since we do not want scenes like at the weekend, where hundreds of people descend on a supermarket at the same time, because this increases the risk of transmission greatly.”

A Government spokesperson said: “We will do whatever it takes to ensure people have the food and supplies they need. Retailers are continuing to monitor their supply chains and taking all the necessary steps to ensure consumers have the food and supplies they need.

“Supermarkets are already taking action to limit the supply of certain items to make sure shelves are stocked and it is crucial we all respect and adhere to these decisions.”


Coronavirus map: Amount of cases across the globe (Image: Express)

11.53am update: Police to open checkpoints and ask drivers if their journey is essential 

North Yorkshire Police has said it will use checkpoints to stop vehicles and ask drivers if their journey is essential amid the covid-19 lockdown.

It is thought other police forces will implement similar measures.

11.36am update: Britons urged to join Clap for Carers campaign

Members of the public are being urged to take part in a national round of applause for NHS employees at 8pm this evening.

The Clap for Carers campaign, that has already taken place in other countries, encourages Britons to stand outside and show their appreciation for health workers.

Boris Johnson is expected to take part.

11.17am update: Britons return from Peru 

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab has announced that the first Government-chartered British Airways flight from Peru has “landed safely back in the UK”.

He said: “We are working urgently with Peruvian authorities to deliver more flights in the coming days.”

10.54am update: Spain coronavirus deaths rise to more than 4,000 

Spain has recorded a substantial rise in the number of confirmed cases of coronvirus, up 8,378 from Wednesday to 56,188.

The number of people that have died from the virus is 4,089 – a rise of 655 people in 24 hours.

10.30am update: Hospitals facing ‘continuous tsunami’ of patients

London hospitals are facing a “continuous tsunami” of seriously-ill patients because of the coronavirus pandemic, an NHS boss has warned.

Chris Hopson, chief executive of NHS Providers, which prevents NHS trusts, said hospitals are experiencing an “explosion of demand”.

He told BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme: “They [London hospitals] are struggling with two things. The first is the explosion of demand they are seeing in seriously ill patients.

“They talk about wave after wave after wave – the word that’s often used to me is a continuous tsunami.

“We are now seeing 30 percent, 40 percent and indeed in some places 50 percent sickness rates as staff catch the virus or are in vulnerable groups or have to self-isolate. That’s an unprecedented absence rate.

“So what we have got is a really wicked combination – trusts trying to deal with a lot more demand than they have ever had before with a lot fewer staff than they have had before.”

London hospitals are facing a ‘tsunami’ of patients, an expert has warned (Image: Getty)

10.06am update: Iran’s death toll rises by 157

Iran’s health ministry has announced the country’s death toll from coronavirus has increased by 157 in the last 24 hours to 2,234.

It also said the number of infections has increased to 29,406.

9.52am update: Isle of Man to shut its borders 

The Isle of Man will close its borders as part of efforts to curb the spread of coronavirus. 

The last flight on to the island will land at 6pm today and the final ferry will dock at 6am tomorrow morning. 

Chief Minister Howard Quayle said the primary objective of the new measures was the “preservation of life”.

He said: “The situation is changing fast. Not just on the island but also across in the United Kingdom. “We are hearing the intense pressure they are under. The National Health Service is straining. Our island is smaller. Our resources are more limited.”

9.32am update: Co-op introduces social distancing measures

Co-op supermarkets will enforce social distancing measures in its stores.

They will introduce floor markers defining one-metre distancing through the shops and two-metre spacing for customer queues. 

Bosses are also aiming to limit the number of customers in stores at any one time as well as reducing the number of tills open, to allow greater distance between shoppers.

9.12am update: Boris scraps car parking charges for NHS staff

The UK Government has announced parking charges for NHS staff will be lifted while they fight the coronavirus outbreak.

The move came after a huge public outcry in response to nurses, doctors and other healthcare workers working on the front line having to pay hefty parking charges to park at work.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock announced the change in policy on Wednesday night and said the Government would give immediate financial backing to all NHS trusts to provide free car parking to NHS staff.

The UK Government has scrapped parking charges for NHS workers (Image: Getty)

8.48am update: Ocado boss says there is ‘no food shortage’ 

Ocado chariman Lord Rose has said there is no shortage of food in the UK, and no one is at risk of starving. 

He told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “There is a billion pounds more food in people’s larders than there was a couple of weeks ago – what are they doing with it? How much food do you need to eat? How much do you need to store away? Please show some restrain.

“There is no shortage of food … Nobody will starve.”

But he said it is important to ensure vulnerable people are given priority.

8.31am update: UK erecting 10 makeshift hospitals

Military officials are working to transform 10 more sites into makeshift hospitals in the fight against coronavirus.

A source told Sky News officials were hoping to convert eight to ten sites into pop up hospitals to house patients of COVID-19.

The plans come after London’s ExCeL was converted into a pop up hospital, which will be known as the NHS Nightingale hospital, with a capacity to treat 4,000 coronavirus patients across two super wards.

8.14am update: Government ‘ramping up’ deliveries of PPE equipment 

Health Minister Edward Argar has said deliveries of personal protective equipment (PPE) is being increased and insisted millions of masks and gloves have already been delivered to NHS staff.

He told BBC Breakfast: “We entirely understand how important it is that you (frontline staff) get the kit that you need and feel safe and are safe in doing this amazing work that you are doing.”

Mr Argar said the Government was “ramping up” deliveries of PPE, and had in the last few days delivered 24 million pairs of protective gloves, along with 13 million protective face masks.

NHS Volunteers: Over half a million people have signed up (Image: Twitter)

8.03am update: Moscow to close all non-essential shops 

Sergei Sobyanin, Moscow’s mayor, has announced all shops except for pharmacies and grocery stores will close. 

The measure, which also includes the closure of restaurants, cafes and bars, will be introduced from March 28 to April 5.

7.52am update: 560,000 sign up to volunteer for NHS 

Health Secretary Matt Hancock has revealed over half a million Britons have signed up as NHS volunteers.

He wrote on Twitter:  “NEWS: Fantastic that 560,000 people have now responded to our call to volunteer to support our NHS to defeat #Coronavirus.”

On Tuesday the Government announced it would try to recruit 250,000 people.

7.41am update: Government insists Prince Charles did not get preferential treatment 

Edward Argar, the health minister, has insisted Prince Charles did not receive preferential treatment by getting a coronavirus test before many NHS workers. 

He told Sky News: “We’ve already done over 97,000 tests at the moment. That’s one of the highest figures around the world. But there is clearly more to do.

“We’re ramping up the capacity to do those tests as fast as we can. Key workers, frontline NHS and social care workers, are at front of the queue for that.

“The Prince of Wales didn’t jump the queue, we are focused on making sure that we ramp up those tests around the country for our frontline workers.:

When asked why Prince Charles was able to get tested, Mr Argar said: “My understanding is that his symptoms, his condition, met that criteria.”

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