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Preston and South Ribble coronavirus infection rates continue to rise, police told to get tougher on enforcing lockdown and supermarkets to refuse entry to non-mask wearers

Posted on - 12th January, 2021 - 7:37pm | Author - | Posted in - Fylde News, Health, Politics, Preston News, Ribble Valley News, South Ribble News, Wyre News
Morrison's at Preston Docks, the supermarket has vowed to refuse entry to customers who will not wear a mask Pic: Tony Worrall
Morrison’s at Preston Docks, the supermarket has vowed to refuse entry to customers who will not wear a mask Pic: Tony Worrall

Preston and South Ribble’s coronavirus infection rates are continuing to rise with South Ribble fast-approaching the 500 cases per 100,000 people mark.

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New cases for Tuesday (12 January) have also been confirmed with the city seeing another day above the 100 new cases mark, this time 116 confirmed cases.

South Ribble recorded 75 new Covid-19 cases for the same day.

Wyre recorded 92 new Covid-19 cases, Fylde was up by 29 and Ribble Valley was up by 43 cases.

Read more: All of the Covid cycle lanes for Preston and South Ribble have now been scrapped

The Covid-19 infection rates for Preston now stand at 445 cases per 100,000 people for the seven days to January 8, up from 319.3 cases per 100,000 people for the seven days to January 1.

All data comes from the Public Health England dashboard and data for the most recent four days (January 9-12) has been excluded as it is incomplete and does not reflect the true number of cases.

South Ribble’s infection rate is now 481.1 cases per 100,000, up from 321.3, for the same date ranges as Preston.

See the latest coronavirus cases and information near you

Wyre’s rate is now 444.3, up from 341.7 and Fylde is at 323.1 up from 275.5.

Ribble Valley has surged further to 612.6 cases per 100,000 people, from 553.5 cases per 100,000 people.

Read more: Area-by-area Covid cases for Preston and South Ribble and how they’ve changed

Government’s ‘enforcement week’ continues as supermarkets say they will enforce masks

Police are being urged by the government to step up the fining of the public for not following coronavirus restrictions.

Home secretary Priti Patel led a Downing Street briefing during Tuesday evening and said she backed tougher policing of the lockdown rules.

She said a ‘minority of the public are putting the nation at risk’.

See the full press conference below

Mrs Patel was joined by chairman of the National POlice Chief’s Council Martin Hewitt said patrols were being stepped up to target rule breakers.

He said: “It is very clear that we are now at the most dangerous stage of the pandemic.

“There is a real and present risk that our health service could be overwhelmed and people – our friends and family – could die needlessly from this virus.

“So, we must all play a part in stopping that from happening.

“Ten months on, the rules are clear and I urge everyone to abide by them.”

Read more: Lancashire police’s full response on Covid rule breakers

Mr Hewitt also said 45,000 fixed penalty notices for breaching Covid rules ad been issued by police forces across the UK since March last year.

Elsewhere the government is facing calls from police forces for clearer guidance on the ‘woolly’ lockdown exercise rules.

Government guidance currently tells the public to only exercise in their local area but there is no distance set by law.

Chairman of the West Yorkshire Police Federation Brian Booth told PA: “The guidance is that you should be local in your own community near where you live but people are far exceeding that.

“Officers have no power in law to deal with it, so it is a bit of a nonsense really.

“The guidance is people’s moral judgement, should they be doing it, but with regard to policing it – it’s impossible.”

Supermarkets have also moved in the past 24-hours to say they will be cracking down on people not wearing masks in stores.

Tesco, Asda, Waitrose, Morrisons and Sainsbury’s have all said they will be toughening up their stance on wearing masks – with Morrisons, Aldi, Tesco, Asda and Waitrose all saying they will refuse entry to non-mask wearing customers unless they can prove an exemption under the government guidelines.

Supermarkets have said security staff will take a more pro-active approach to enforcing mask wearing.

Read more: See the latest Preston news and headlines

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