“The new variant is out of control, and we need to bring it under control, and this news about the new variant has been an incredibly difficult end to frankly an awful year,” Hancock told the BBC’s ”Andrew Marr Show.”
“What I'd say to every single person is that if you act like you have the virus, then that will stop the virus from spreading to others,” he said.
The health secretary said the rules for tier four were “incredibly clear” and said people should “stay at home unless you absolutely need to leave for one of the reasons that we set out.” The rules also prohibit travelling in and out of tier four areas.
Hancock condemned the behaviour of people who were filmed on Dec. 19 rushing to train stations to leave London before the lockdown measures came into force at midnight, calling them “totally irresponsible.”
“Of course we don’t want to cancel Christmas,” said Hancock. “We don’t want to take any of these measures, but it’s our duty to take them where the evidence is clear.”
Johnson said on Dec. 19 that there was currently no evidence to suggest the new variant affects the severity or mortality rate of the disease, or the effectiveness of vaccines.