European countries begin end to COVID-19 lockdown as fears grow of second wave

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When deciding whether to start easing lockdown restrictions in the UK, the government is looking at the risk of a second wave of the virus hitting the country. Several European countries have started to ease their lockdown measures to varying degrees of success. Last night Boris Johnson said that the UK is past the peak of its coronavirus pandemic. The government has warned the reproductive rate of the virus must be below one to avoid a second peak of coronavirus. This means that on average someone with the virus passes it on to less than one person.

The government released a video explaining what the R of COVID-19 means.

Downing Street has said the number of new cases each day should be below 1000 before easing any lockdown measures. Some ministers are concerned that ending the lockdown too quickly may lead to a second spike in coronavirus infections. There is some indication that in Germany, where measures are being relaxed, a second peak may be emerging. Germany had got new virus cases down to 2,000 per day by 19th April, and began lifting some restrictions the next day. Churches, gardens, zoos, playgrounds, monuments, and museums all started to reopen. Then cases began to rise again, sparking fears the government had begun to ease the lockdown too quickly. The government responded by delaying the decision to reopen schools and said social distancing rules will remain in place until at least 10th May.

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