December 3, 2020

UK coronavirus deaths surge by 462 in biggest Saturday jump since May as cases rise by 26,860 – Evening Standard

he UK has recorded more than 460 coronavirus deaths overnight – the biggest Saturday rise since early May.

The Government confirmed a further 462 fatalities over the past 24 hours, bringing the official death toll to 51,766.

 However, separate figures published by the Office for National Statistics show that more than 67,000 deaths have now been registered in the UK where Covid-19 was mentioned on the death certificate.

Another 26,860 cases of the disease were also recorded in the country in the past 24 hours, bringing the total since the start of the pandemic to 1,344,356.

Today’s rise in deaths is an increase of almost 100 on Friday’s figure, when 376 new fatalities were recorded.

The daily death toll marks the most UK fatalities on a Saturday since 587 were reported on May 2, when the country was emerging from its first peak of the pandemic.

Earlier, British hospitals confirmed a further 370 patients had died of the virus: 304 in England, 36 in Scotland, 20 in Wales and 10 in Northern Ireland.

However, in a sign that the outbreak may be starting to slow, the daily number of infections reached its lowest figure since Wednesday.

The latest case count was almost 500 lower than yesterday’s 24-hour total of 27,301.

Any hopes of families gathering at Christmas will also be dependent on the reproduction rate of the disease staying below one for “some time”, according to documents released by the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage).

A document from the science advisers, dated November 4, said: “If England returns to the same application of the tiering system in place before November 5, then transmission will return to the same rate of increase as today.”

Other papers from late October suggested that in a scenario where prevalence of infections is “low and controlled”, and where NHS Test and Trace “can play a big role in containing outbreaks”, there is scope for a loosening of social distancing rules over Christmas for a “limited time”, the experts said.

For this to happen, “rapid and decisive interventions” must push R well below one and “maintain that for some time”.

However in other “high and controlled” cases scenarios there would be “little to no scope for loosening of social distancing rules over Christmas”.