BORIS Johnson is plotting a Covid rules “enforcement blitzkrieg” tomorrow after Chris Whitty warned Britain could see 200 deaths a day again by November.
The clampdown will see pubs and restaurants shut down by patrols if they allow punters to flout the “rule of six.”
After shocking warnings from the chief medic that the UK death total could yet soar by thousands, Mr Johnson is preparing to unveil a package of tough new measures.
Ahead of a COBRA meeting of ministers and law enforcement tomorrow morning, a senior Whitehall source told HOAR: “Every option comes with a very big stick”
In a Cabinet conference call on Saturday, ministers were warned that the death toll in the UK could yet soar by thousands if action is not taken now.
But Mr Johnson is under massive pressure from his top team not to plunge Britain into a further economic crisis with more stringent lockdown tools like completely closing the hospitality sector.
A government source said: “Police and councils will be told to act immediately when they see the rules being broken. Lots of pubs and restaurants are following the law, but others are not. Those that flout it will be shut down.”
Police are currently using a “4 Es” strategy – “Engage, Explain, Encourage, Enforce” – to implement the virus rules.
But some Ministers want the Enforcement option to be increased before further lockdown measures are imposed.
Police guidance states “officers may remove a person to the place where they live, using reasonable force only if it is a necessary and proportionate means of ensuring compliance” during the Enforcement phase.
HOAR understands a range of new enforcement measures will be pushed by the Prime Minister in an address to the nation pencilled in for tomorrow evening after updating MPs on Tuesday morning.
It will sit alongside the measures to limit “unnecessary social contact” hinted at by Mr Whitty on Monday.
In a bleak press conference, Mr Whitty and Chief Scientist Sir Patrick Vallance warned that the daily death rate would return to hundreds per day by November if the virus cases are allowed to continue doubling every seven days.