As many of you will know, yesterday evening the Government announced Tier 4 restrictions in areas across the South East. This includes all of London, and many of the surrounding counties. You can see a full list of which areas are impacted here. You can also find more information here.Additional measures have also been taken in parts of Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales and you can find more information on those areas here.Most of the changes came into effect this morning.
Following an Executive Board call this morning and updated information on a new strain of COVID-19 that is transmitting faster than previous strains, we have decided to step back from shared vans as we continue our policy of putting the safety of our people and the communities we operate in first. It is important to note that current medical advice is that this new strain is not any more dangerous than previous strains, and vaccines will still be as effective.
In light of the Government announcement and the uncertainty around the new strain, we have taken the decision to temporarily cease the use of shared vans in full lockdown or Tier 4 or above areas. This means shared vans should stop in the areas listed here, and all of Wales, with immediate effect. Changes should be made in mainland Scotland and Northern Ireland from 26 December. For more information on the rules in mainland Scotland please click here and for Northern Ireland, please click here.
I know how important this week is to the business, and I understand that this will place additional pressure upon you. However, our first priority must always be the safety of our people.
We have taken this decision as an emergency measure, and will be keeping this under close review as more information from Government and public health bodies appears. In the meantime, please ensure that all safety measures are being followed in your units, and you and your teams continue to follow Government guidelines.
Dr Shaun Davis
Global Director Compliance & Sustainability