Coronavirus latest news: Beaches becoming ‘unmanageable’ as Britons opt for staycations

UK must heed ‘warning light’ amid concerns over second wave, says PM’There was no choice’: The 36 hours that forced Johnson to put brakes onPubs may close so schools can reopen, Prof Whitty suggestsJudith Woods: The light at the end of the tunnel has become a trainW​hy the race for a coronavirus vaccine must include developing countriesSign up to The Telegraph Global Health Security bulletinBeaches are becoming “unmanageable” due to large swathes of visitors, local authorities have warned, prompting fears around keeping people safe in the water and social distancing.Daytrippers are flocking to beaches across the country as many opt for a “staycation” in the UK amid uncertainty over holidays abroad.The Coastguard had its busiest day for more than four years on Friday – when the UK recorded its third hottest day ever – as it dealt with more than 300 incidents.In response to the influx, Thanet District Council asked people to avoid four of the area’s beaches, including Margate’s Main Sands, due to the number of visitors.The Coastguard said the total number of UK incidents was 329, including 232 callouts for coastguard rescue teams, 129 for lifeboats, 22 requiring aircraft and three for a hovercraft.It comes as Europe’s largest tour operator Tui extended the cancellation of all UK holidays to the Balearic Islands and Canary Islands until August 10 and all holidays to mainland Spain until August 17 following the Government’s decision to impose quarantine on all travellers returning from the country. Follow the latest updates below.04:37 PMToday’s top storiesGood evening. Here’s a run-down of some of the key developments across the world today:Deaths in the UK are up by 74 and cases by 771, latest figures show. Professor Graham Medley, a member of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage), said England could have to consider closing pubs in order to reopen schools next month, echoing suggestions from Prof Chris Whitty that “difficult trade-offs” must be made. Beaches are becoming “unmanageable” due to large swathes of visitors, local authorities have warned, prompting fears around keeping people safe in the water and social distancing.Spain’s tourism minister has said the country will not impose any reciprocal quarantine measures on travellers arriving from Britain, even as fears rise about a second wave of Covid-19 infections hitting the UK.The NHS lost a further 165,000 working days during the height of the pandemic due to mental health-related staff absences, first figures show, as doctor and nursing unions warn that current stress levels are unsustainable. America’s top infectious diseases official Anthony Fauci has raised concerns over the safety of Covid-19 vaccines being developed by China and Russia, adding it was unlikely that the US would use any vaccine developed in either country.A Berlin protest against coronavirus restrictions today drew thousands, with police putting turnout at around 15,000. Vietnam’s coastal city of Danang plans to test its entire population of 1.1 million people for coronavirus infection, governing authorities said today, as 40 new cases linked to the tourist hotspot were reported across the country.Southeast Asian countries reported record rises of new coronavirus cases today: India and the Philippines reported record increases in new daily infections at 57,000 and 5,000 despite increased restrictions; Japan’s Okinawa declared a state of emergency after a record jump in cases on the island, and Hong Kong opened a new makeshift hospital to house virus patients after cases rose to new highs.04:24 PMGive people self-isolating free accommodation away from families, says Government advisorPeople with suspected coronavirus should be offered free accommodation by the Government to allow them to self-isolate away from loved ones, a leading scientist has said.Prof Graham Medley, a member of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage), said that with most of the spread of Covid-19 now coming from within households the risk could be minimised by removing suspected cases to another location.He suggested the easiest way might be for them to be offered free accommodation in which to self-isolate for the required period.Prof Medley said: “Most of the transmission is occurring inside people’s homes. People have been talking about other alternative strategies, for example offering people the chance to isolate away from their homes, which I think is something worth considering as an alternative.”Patrick Sawer has more here. 04:22 PMSpain could extend furlough scheme to year’s end, says ministerSpain’s Labour Minister Yolanda Diaz has suggested the government would extend its coronavirus furlough scheme for an extra three months until the end of the year.Speaking after talks in Majorca with the regional government and union bosses, Diaz said it would make no sense to drop the ERTE furlough scheme when it is scheduled to finish at the end of September.”It would not make any sense to drop a protection system as important as the one designed by the government,” she said.”There is no point in designing a mechanism that involves huge amounts of public resources then at the decisive moment… we drop it,” she said in comments broadcast on Spain’s RNE radio.”The key is in the last quarter of the year,” Diaz said, indicating she wanted to send a “message of calm”.”We are not going to remove anything.”04:08 PMExclusive: Mental health toll on NHS workers in lockdown revealed as first figures show staff absence rose by 165,000 daysThe NHS lost a further 165,000 working days during the height of the pandemic due to mental health-related staff absences, first figures show, as staff struggled to cope with unprecedented pressure.NHS employees have reported 29 per cent more absences from work due to poor mental health compared to the UK average between April and June, data from absence management system FirstCare has found, and there has been an overall increase of 22 per cent in mental health absences in the NHS since this time last year.The rise equates to an increase of around 165,000 working days during the three month period – the equivalent of a full year’s work for 723 full-time employees.Georgina Hayes has more here. 03:57 PMRecord spikes in Asia as WHO issues grim virus warningSoutheast Asian countries reported record rises of new coronavirus cases today as the WHO warned the effects of the pandemic would be felt for decades.India and the Philippines reported record increases in new daily infections at 57,000 and 5,000, despite tightened restrictions.”We are waging a losing battle against Covid-19, and we need to draw up a consolidated, definitive plan of action,” said an open letter signed by 80 Filipino medical associations.Japan’s Okinawa declared a state of emergency after a record jump in cases on the island – many linked to US military forces stationed there.Meanwhile, Hong Kong opened a new makeshift hospital to house virus patients after cases rose to new highs.03:50 PMCoronavirus around the world, in picturesA protester stands next to police officers during a demonstration against coronavirus restrictions in Berlin, Germany, believed to be attended by around 15,000 people – ReutersMore from Germany: Police officers stand next to demonstrators blocking the street during a protest near the Brandenburg Gate – ReutersA passenger is being tested for Covid-19 on arrival at Charles de Gaulle airport in France. The country has seen an uptick in cases – ReutersA face mask-wearing girl attends Eid al-Adha prayers on the street in Jakarta yesterday – ReutersMore from the anti-restrictions protests in Berlin: Crowds disregard social distancing despite cases in Germany increasing – Getty Images EuropeA mask-clad passenger arrives at Cyprus’ Larnaca International Airport with a feline friend – AFP03:39 PMHard decisions ahead as October second wave probable, says scientific adviserThere will probably be a second wave of coronavirus in October in the UK and “some hard decisions will need to be made about what restrictions need to be reintroduced”, a scientist advising the Government has said.The BBC reports that Prof Calum Semple, who is a member of the advisory group Sage, made the comments after another scientific adviser said pubs or “other activities” in England may need to close to allow schools to reopen next month.Prof Semple, from the University of Liverpool, said whether pubs or the hospitality sector will be “taking a hit in preference to education will be a political decision.”Read more: Prof Chris Whitty’s ‘trade-offs’ warning could mean pubs closing so schools can open03:32 PMDefra steps up protection measures as influx of staycation tourists are harming breeding sealsThe Government has stepped up protection measures for Britain’s seal colonies, after an influx of staycation tourists has been scaring mothers and newborns back into the sea when resting.Holidaymakers who have opted to stay closer to home this year are allegedly wreaking havoc among seal populations during the harbour seal’s breeding season.The mammals haul-out onto dry land to rest, sleep, digest food and when breeding, protection groups say.But tourists have been getting too close to the animals, trying to stroke them or take selfies, and even in some cases mistaking them for dolphins and believing they need to be pushed back into the water.Seal disturbances can result in severe injuries from dive bombing off rocks, exhaustion, and even death, experts say.Lizzie Roberts has more here. 03:21 PMThe one place planning a ‘feminist economic recovery’ from Covid-19Last month, a small collection of islands in Hawaii made history, reports Jennifer Rigby. In a vote at its local government office on a Friday afternoon, Maui County became the first place in the world to explicitly commit to involving and prioritising women and gender equality in its Covid-19 recovery plan. “I’ve never heard the word feminist over and over again – in such a positive way – at this level before,” says Khara Jabola-Carolus, executive director of Hawaii’s State Commission on the Status of Women. “It was surreal.” There have been calls across the world, often at the highest levels, for a gender responsive approach to the pandemic. Two weeks ago, philanthropist Melinda Gates warned that ignoring the effects of Covid-19 on women could cost the world $5trn.Find out more here. 03:12 PMUK deaths up by 74According to a coronavirus dashboard for the UK, deaths are up by 74 and infections are up by 771.Last Saturday there were 767 infections and 61 deaths.03:07 PMFurther four hospital deaths in EnglandA further four people who tested positive for the coronavirus have died in hospital in England, bringing the total number of confirmed reported deaths in hospitals to 29,342, NHS England said.Patients were aged between 78 and 84 years old and all had known underlying health conditions.Another five deaths were reported with no positive Covid-19 test result.02:56 PMJust 30pc of Britons approve of Government’s handling of pandemicOnly 30 per cent Britons approve of the Government’s handling of the coronavirus crisis, while almost half (48 per cent) disapprove, according to a recent poll.The survey, carried out by Opinium, also shows the public is becoming more divided over lockdown. Both the proportion believing we’re coming out of lockdown too slowly (11 per cent) and those believing we’re coming out too quickly (51 per cent) increased by three points in the past week.In more positive news for the Chancellor, the public are increasing their readiness to go to pubs and restaurants, however – in time for the Eat Out To Help Out scheme to begin this month.The number of those who have gone to restaurants or who plan to soon has increased to 33 per cent, up from 27 per cent a fortnight ago.The poll also reveals that the Conservative lead over Labour has narrowed to just three points.02:46 PMWatch: Bournemouth beach busy again as coastguard urges people to take care02:38 PMLebanon’s health system trapped between economic catastrophe and coronavirusLebanon’s surging Covid-19 cases will overwhelm its crisis-stricken health system by mid-month unless urgent action is taken, according to hospital managers and health officials.As the country battled its highest daily number of coronavirus infections on Wednesday, Rafik Hariri University Hospital (RHUH), the main coronavirus facility, also battled an 18-hour electricity cut that threatened to overwhelm their ageing generators.The country’s hospitals – trapped in the middle of economic catastrophe and a surging pandemic – are in crisis.Abbie Cheeseman has more here. 02:28 PMTurnout at Berlin protest against coronavirus restrictions well below expectationsA Berlin protest against coronavirus restrictions drew thousands, from the hard-left and right to conspiracy theorists today, AFP reports.Police put turnout at 15,000 – well below the 500,000 organisers had announced as they urged a “day of freedom” from months of virus curbs.”We are the second wave,” shouted some as marchers headed for the Brandenburg Gate while others called for “resistance”, dubbing the pandemic “the biggest conspiracy theory”.Few protesters wore a mask or respected the 1.5-metre (five-foot) social distancing requirement, an AFP journalist reported, despite police calling on them via megaphone to do so.Berlin police revealed on Twitter they had launched a legal action against organisers over “non-respect of hygiene rules”.A handful of people
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