UK lockdown announced by Prime Minister Boris Johnson amid coronavirus spread
Gatherings of more than two people are banned.
Corinne ReichertSenior Writer
Corinne Reichert (she/her) grew up in Sydney, Australia and moved to California in 2019. She holds degrees in law and communications, and currently writes news, analysis and features for CNET across the topics of electric vehicles, broadband networks, mobile devices, big tech, artificial intelligence, home technology and entertainment. In her spare time, she watches soccer games and F1 races, and goes to Disneyland as often as possible.
I've been covering technology and mobile for 12 years, first as a telecommunications reporter and assistant editor at ZDNet in Australia, then as CNET's West Coast head of breaking news, and now in the Thought Leadership team.
"From this evening, I must give the British people a very simple instruction: You must stay at home," Johnson said Monday evening. He added it's critical to stop the disease from spreading between households. "You should not be meeting friends. If your friends ask you to meet, you should say no. You should not be meeting family members who do not live in your home."
People are allowed to leave their homes only to shop for basic necessities "as infrequently as possible"; exercise outdoors once a day, like running, walking or cycling, which can only be done alone or with other members of your household; provide for any medical need, like helping a vulnerable person; and travel to and from work, "but only where this is absolutely necessary and cannot be done from home."
Weddings, baptisms and other ceremonies -- apart from funerals -- are banned.
The police will have the power to enforce these rules, including through fines and dispersing gatherings. Johnson said all nonessential places and stores -- including clothing stores, electronic goods stores, places of worship, libraries, playgrounds and outdoor gyms are all closing.
"Parks remain open for exercise but gatherings will be dispersed," he said.
The restrictions will be under constant review and will be looked at again in three weeks, he said, when they may be relaxed.