Local lockdowns announced for Cardiff, Swansea and Llanelli
Cardiff, Swansea and Llanelli will go into lockdown in an attempt to control the spread of coronavirus cases in the area.
They will come into effect in Llanelli, Carmarthenshire on Saturday at 6pm and in Cardiff and Swansea on Sunday at 6pm.
People will not be allowed to leave these areas without a reasonable excuse. Neither will they be able to meet indoors with people they do not live with.
The latest ‘local’ lockdowns mean that almost half the population of Wales are now under tighter Covid-19 restrictions.
Caerphilly, Rhondda Cynon Taf, Bridgend, Blaenau Gwent, Merthyr Tydfil and Newport are under local lockdown already.
The new lockdowns are “to protect health and prevent the further spread of coronavirus”, Health Minister Vaughan Gething has said.
But people in Cardiff and Swansea should not “treat this weekend as a final blow-out”, he said.
Apart from Llanelli, west, mid and north Wales remain under regular Covid-19 guidelines. Caes remain much lower in the north of Wales than the south, the Welsh Government said.
Llanelli becomes the first individual town to go into lockdown – all the others are counties. Burry Port will not be included in the Llanelli lockdown.
Anyone who needs to check whether they are included can use the post code checker on the Government website.
Vaughan Gething said cases in Carmarthenshire had mostly been linked to Llanelli, with eight out of 10 cases there.
He blamed people socialising without social distancing for the rise in cases.
Carmarthenshire’s Covid rate of infection is now 47.1 per 100,000 of the population, which is higher than some other parts of Wales when put into lockdown.
Commenting on three further local lockdowns, Andrew RT Davies – the Shadow Health Minister – said he was disappointed that these lockdowns had to be imposed.
“Welsh Conservatives have been calling for the use of more detailed data and the introduction of ‘smart, hyperlocal’ lockdowns and I take some comfort that is at least the case in Llanelli, but I regret this has seemingly not been possible in our capital city of Cardiff,” he said.
“I have to say I’m also confused as to why the local lockdowns are being imposed on different days in Cardiff and Swansea, and Llanelli. Covid doesn’t know one day from the next, and I didn’t find the Health Minister’s explanation that satisfactory. What’s key is clarity and consistency, and we don’t see that right now from the Welsh Labour-led Government.
“That aside, we need to see steps being taken to protect the most vulnerable through shielding, and all of us need to play our part by adhering to social distancing, masks, and hand hygiene, and we need to see a strong public information campaign from the Welsh Labour-led Government to hammer this message home.”