New arrivals in the UK to be made to self-isolate from June 8
Home secretary Priti Patel has said that people arriving in the UK from June 8 onward must self-isolate for 14 days to help “reduce the risk” of a second wave of coronavirus cases.
Anyone travelling to the UK must inform the government about where they plan to self-isolate by filling in an online locator contact form.
The accommodation travellers use to self-isolate must meet minimum requirements, with hotels or private addresses with friends or family members among those deemed acceptable.
Failing to complete the locator form will leave travellers liable to a fine of £100, while any non-UK citizens who do not comply could be refused entry into the country.
Facilities will be provided by the government for new arrivals to undergo quarantine if they do not have suitable accommodation arranged.
Spot checks could be conducted any time during the allotted 14-day quarantine period to enforce the new rules, with public health staff visiting the declared premises to carry out checks. Anybody found to be breach of their self-isolation will be handed a fixed penalty notice of £1,000, while repeat offenders could receive an unlimited face and be prosecuted.
Those self-isolating will also be instructed to avoid using public transport during their quarantine and to travel by car if possible. They are also advised not to leave their accommodation to buy food if other people are able to shop on their behalf.
Speaking prior to the Bank Holiday weekend, Patel said that the new measures were introduced with the intention of keeping the transmission rate of the virus down and avoiding a second peak of the virus in the UK.
She said: "I fully expect the majority of people will do the right thing and abide by these measures. But we will take enforcement action against the minority of people who endanger the safety of others."
Some people will be made exempt from the new rules, including lorry drivers, medical staff, and seasonal farm labourers. Meanwhile, people entering the UK from Ireland, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man will not be required to comply.
The Home Office said that the devolved governments in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland will be responsible for enforcing the new regulations locally.
The government has indicated that it will not in the first instance seek to make any agreements with countries that do have lower numbers of cases to allow tourists to travel to the UK without self-isolating.
The government has also advised against all but essential international travel and warned that people displaying any Covid-19 symptoms should not travel at all.
The new rules will be reviewed and updated accordingly every three weeks.