SAGE scientist warns UK on knife edge as people enjoy sunny bank holiday
It's set to be the warmest day of the year so far.
One of the country's top scientists has warned that the next two weeks are crucial in the progress of the easing of lockdown restrictions, as the UK prepares for a sunny bank holiday.
Many people will flock to beaches, parks and beer gardens even after the bank holiday is over, with temperatures expected to hit 25C in some parts of the country. But some of the country's top scientists are warning that the next two weeks are critical for the potential lifting of lockdown restrictions on 21 June.
Covid infection rates are steadily rising, with the UK recording more than 3,000 cases on Sunday for the fifth day in a row. For context, this figure had previously not been reached since 12 April.
This rise in infections is largely due to the so-called Indian variant that has entered the country and spreads much quicker than the previous variant.
Susan Michie, a professor of health psychology at University College London who sits on government advisory group Scientific Pandemic Insights Group on Behaviours (SPI-B), told Sky News: "We're on a knife-edge.
"We could go either way with this new variant.
"Either it could run away as it did before Christmas, which would be extremely serious and we'd have to have more restrictions, or potentially it could be contained. But that does mean everybody needs to be cautious right now.
"Everybody's behaviour could potentially make the difference.
"So the key thing at the moment is for people to do their socialising outdoors, and if people are inside, make sure windows and doors are open."
The warning comes as another of the government's scientific advisors said that the country is now in the early stages of a third wave of infections.