London / The controversial quarantine that forces those arriving in the UK to undergo a mandatory 14-day confinement went into effect today, a measure that the British Government sees as necessary to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, but which has put the sector on a war footing tourist and aviation.
The rule is part of the de-escalation process that the United Kingdom has started at different speeds depending on the region, and which already allows some primary courses to return to schools and the opening of stores for some non-essential goods, although bars and Restaurants continue to serve only home orders.
The Spanish-British group IAG (which includes British Airways, Iberia, Vueling, LEVEL and Aer Lingus) and their rivals, the British easyJet and the Irish Ryanair, have sent a letter to the Government as part of the judicial process that they have started to ask the courts to cancel quarantine.
In the letter, to which EFE had access, the airlines argue that the measure is “disproportionate” and “unfair” and urge the Executive of the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, to eliminate it because, they clarified, “it will have a devastating effect on the sector tourism with the destruction of thousands of jobs in this unprecedented crisis. ”
Travelers in strict confinement
Starting today, anyone arriving in the UK by plane, ferry or train, including British citizens, must fill out a form to provide their contact details and accommodation in the country and, if they do not have it, the Government will provide one which will be paid for by the visitor.
It is recommended to use your own vehicle, whenever possible, to avoid the use of public transport and taxis and, once in the chosen residence, you should not leave to go to work, go to school or any public place, or not even to buy food or medicine, since it is advisable to have someone you trust to do these things.
The measure contemplates that British agents carry out random home visits to monitor compliance with the rule, although the tourism sector has questioned whether this is possible, citing, as an example, the problems that the Executive is having to put its system of operations into operation. contagion tracking.
There are exceptions that cover citizens from neighboring Ireland and workers in certain industries, such as agriculture, road transport and healthcare professionals, but for the rest this is a mandatory guideline and failure to do so may result in a fine of up to 1,000 pounds (more than 1,100 euros).
The tourist industry, on the warpath
Some five hundred companies in the British tourism industry, which represents around 6% of the country’s economy, have announced that they are considering supporting the complaint filed by the airlines and have created the “Quash Quarantine” campaign to try to that the measure be revoked, reported “The Daily Telegraph” today.
The group, led by George Morgan-Grenville, CEO of the tour operator Red Savannah, could join the legal action brought by IAG, Ryanair and easyJet or launch another legal initiative on its own.
Hotels, travel agencies and restaurants fear that the stoppage of activity caused by the pandemic will now be followed by the consequences of imposing two weeks of confinement on tourists that could be their last hope to save the summer season.
Last year, the UK received 40.9 million visitors, leaving £ 28.4 billion (€ 31.8 billion) in the country, according to VisitBritain national tourism office.
The Johnson government, subjected to intense criticism for its management of the health crisis, has affirmed that it is negotiating air corridors with countries that consider themselves “safe” -among which would be Spain, Portugal, Greece and France-, although it has advanced that they would not take effect until at least the week of June 28, when the effectiveness of this quarantine will be reviewed.
Improvements in the numbers of affected
The United Kingdom has registered 55 new deaths from COVID-19 in the last 24 hours, the lowest number since confinement was imposed on March 23, bringing the total number of deaths from coronavirus to 40,597, reported Monday. the Ministry of Health.
The head of Health, Matt Hancok, specified that lower data is always reported on Mondays due to the delay in registering deaths and infections during the weekend, although he stressed that the figure represents almost half of deaths than last Monday and that the same day of the previous week.
The number of new coronavirus cases was 1,205, which is also the lowest record since the start of confinement.
Hancok affirmed that the contagion rate is less than one in all regions of the country, as well as that the number of hospital admissions and people infected with COVID-19 who are admitted to health centers has decreased.
Two of the four British regions, Scotland and Northern Ireland, reported no new deaths from the virus for the second day in a row, although the United Kingdom remains the country in Europe with the most confirmed deaths from COVID-19. (June 8, 2020, EFE / PracticaEspañol)
The related video news (May 22, 2020):