Overseas arrivals to face £1,000 fines if they fail to quarantine for 14 days

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LONDON: International travellers could face spot checks and £1,000 fines if they fail to self-isolate for 14 days after arriving in the UK under measures to guard against a second wave of coronavirus.

Home Secretary Priti Patel is expected to outline the plans – which will be introduced early this month – at the daily Downing Street briefing on Friday, a senior Government official confirmed.

Exemptions for road hauliers and medical officials will apply, while the common travel area with Ireland will be unaffected. Arrivals from France will not be exempt, the official confirmed, following confusion earlier this week.

Travellers will be asked to fill in a form with their contact information, and health officials will perform spot checks to ensure compliance with the measures.

Meanwhile, the scientific advice given to the Government which informed proposals to send some pupils back to school from June 1 will be published. The Sun newspaper reported that the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) papers will suggest teachers are at no greater risk of catching coronavirus than other key workers.

The publication of the advice follows concern from teaching unions and council leaders about the Government’s plans to allow children in nursery, Reception, Year 1 and Year 6 to return to school from next month.

In other developments:

  • A trial of a rapid 20-minute test to tell people if they currently have Covid-19 was launched.
  • A new study suggested that a blood test could help track a person’s immune response to Covid-19, allowing doctors to identify at an early stage who might need additional treatment or critical care.
  • England’s chief medical officer, Professor Chris Whitty, said excess deaths in care homes during the coronavirus pandemic have peaked and “come down a long way”.