Government coronavirus postcode checker crashes within minutes of launch 9 months ago

Government coronavirus postcode checker crashes within minutes of launch

The site allows you to find out your local coronavirus restrictions, but fell at the first hurdle

The government's 'Find out the coronavirus restrictions in your local area' website crashed shortly after launch today.

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Launched before the health secretary Matt Hancock was due to give a statement in the House of Commons, the website allows users to enter their postcode, which tells them which tier of coronavirus restrictions they will be under after the national lockdown in England is lifted on December 2nd.

However, at time of publication, when a user enters their postcode, the website crashes, claiming "technical difficulties", likely due to the number of users trying to access the site.

Matt Hancock was expected to announce which regions of England would be placed in the highest tiers. However, the early release of the government's website led journalists to pip the health secretary to the post, revealing that, among other regions, Manchester, Hull, Newcastle, Birmingham and Wolverhampton would be placed into Tier 3 restrictions.

The website's early release prompted criticism in the Commons from Valerie Vaz MP, saying: "This is an absolutely appalling way to treat Parliament. The website has crashed because everybody is on it."

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Commons Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle was similarly outraged, saying: "This house should be informed first. We keep telling the government that this is the way that good government treats and respects this chamber."

A very small number of regions in England will be under Tier 1 restrictions: Cornwall and Isles of Scilly, and the Isle of Wight. All other regions in England will be under Tier 2 and Tier 3 restrictions.

In both Tier 2 and Tier 3 restrictions, indoor household mixing is banned - apart from support bubbles - but retail can reopen. In Tier 2, pubs and bars may only serve alcohol as part of a substantial meal, and under Tier 3 hospitality must close, apart from takeaway and delivery.

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