Coronavirus: ‘Concerning’ rise in car journeys as people urged to stay at home

A “concerning” rise in car journeys has sparked fresh warnings for people to stay at home during the coronavirus lockdown.

Dr Yvonne Doyle, medical director of Public Health England, revealed motor vehicle usage in Britain has jumped to around a third of usual levels.

Despite a gradual drop off to 27% on Sunday, the number leaped by 10% to 37% in a single day.

Bus and underground journeys in London also rose, but National Rail train usage dipped slightly compared to the latest figures.

Speaking at the daily Downing Street briefing, Dr Doyle said that while “most people” are following the rules to stay at home “everyone needs to do that” because “we need to save lives and protect the NHS” during the COVID-19 outbreak.

She also revealed a “slightly concerning” rise of new UK cases on Wednesday by 390 to 3,009.

“It’s still too early to say whether the plateau of hospital admissions has ended but we’ve now seen three days of increases in a row,” she explained.

“We need to protect the NHS, and the best way to do that is to stay at home, to avoid catching the disease yourself and obviously avoid giving it to anyone else.”

She added that although most of the people being admitted to hospital for coronavirus are in London, the Midlands is becoming “a concern as well”, warning: “The threat is everywhere… There is no reason to be complacent.”

Globally, the UK has started pushing up towards the deaths trajectory experienced in Italy.

The latest figures announced on Wednesday said another 563 people died in the UK after testing positive for coronavirus – bringing the total number of deaths to 2,352.

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