Covid mask

Face coverings have today (Tuesday) become mandatory again on public transport and in shops in an effort to slow the spread of the Omicron coronavirus variant.

Many shops in Burnham-On-Sea have reintroduced posters in their windows this week, asking customers to wear masks.

People arriving in the UK from abroad will now also have to take a PCR test and self-isolate until they receive a negative result.

It comes after 11 cases of the new variant were detected in the UK.

Health Secretary Sajid Javid said it is expected cases will continue to rise in the coming days.

Early evidence suggests Omicron – first found in southern Africa – has a higher re-infection risk. But scientists say it will take about three weeks before it is known how the variant impacts on the effectiveness of vaccines.

The changes to the rules began at 4am today.

Another change, which has already come into effect, requires all contacts of suspected Omicron cases to self-isolate for 10 days, even if they are fully vaccinated.

The government says it will review the changes again in three weeks’ time.


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