Boris Johnson is considering whether to impose national lockdown restrictions after scientists urged him to act now, it has been reported.
The Prime Minister admitted yesterday the UK is experiencing a second wave and that it was inevitable coronavirus would hit again.
Professor Neil Ferguson – whose modelling led the government to order the lockdown in March – said the UK is facing a "perfect storm."
He said if a lockdown is left for "another two to four weeks" the UK will be "back at infection levels" the country saw in mid-March.
Mr Ferguson told the BBC: "If we leave it another two to four weeks, we will be back at [infection] levels we were seeing more like mid-March.
"That’s clearly going to cause deaths because people will be hospitalised. I think some additional measures are likely to be needed sooner rather than later."
He added: "We have in some sense a perfect storm right now of people, as they have been told to, getting back to normal, schools reopening, a surge in cases, so therefore the testing system is under strain.
"So unfortunately we do have to roll the relaxation of measures back a little bit and get contacts down in the population."
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Speaking to reporters during a visit to Oxford on Friday, Mr Johnson said it is clear the long-feared second wave of the pandemic has reached the UK and some additional measures are likely to be necessary.
"We are now seeing a second wave coming in. We are seeing it in France, in Spain, across Europe – it has been absolutely, I’m afraid, inevitable we were going to see it in this country."
It comes as new confirmed daily cases of coronavirus hit 4,422 – topping 4,000 for two consecutive days for the first time since early May.
On Friday Labour joined the Scottish and Welsh governments in calling on the Prime Minister to summon a meeting of the Government’s Cobra civil contingencies committee – which has not met since May – to consider the worsening situation.
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