What is a circuit breaker lockdown?

LABOUR leader Keir Starmer has demanded a 'circuit breaker' national lockdown instead of the PM's three-tier system.

Government sources said Boris Johnson agreed a circuit breaker lockdown could be implemented if the three-tier system fails – but what exactly is it?

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What is a circuit breaker lockdown?

A circuit breaker lockdown would be short, sharp bursts of full, national lockdown measures intersected with breaks of a few weeks.

Addressing the nation on Tuesday, October 13 Sir Keir said: "We're at a decisive moment in fight against coronavirus. The figures are stark and all heading in the wrong direction,

"Another course of action is needed, that's why I'm calling for a two to three week circuit breaker in England.

"A temporary set of clear and effective restrictions to get the R rate down."

Where did the circuit breaker come from?

The term was first used to refer to steps taken by the Singaporean Government in April.

The country was placed into a quick lockdown of a month, which was then extended to two months.

Singapore is still yet to enter a second-wave – but lots of measures are still in place to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

When could a circuit breaker lockdown be introduced?

Accoridng to The Telegraph, No 10 sources have said the Boris Johnson will consider implementing the lockdown style if the new three-tier system fails.

Sir Keir has suggested the measures be introduced over the October half-term, so that schools need not shut.

According to The Telegraph, a decision will be taken around October 23.

But on October 14 Secretary of State for Work and Pensions Thérèse Coffey told both LBC and Sky News a circuit-breaker lockdown was an unlikely option for Mr Johnson, adding the government "is the not in the right place".

Where else has used a circuit breaker lockdown?

In the UK, Scotland is currently under a two-week period of lockdown with various measures in place in an attempt to bring the R rate down.

Similar measures were also imposed in New Zealand, parts of Australia and Israel – but all were extended to last significantly longer than originally intended

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