Coronavirus: Public transport restrictions will be eased to get people back to work - report

12 July 2020, 02:25 | Updated: 13 July 2020, 10:26

Restrictions on public transport use are to be eased, according to a report, as the government tries to encourage people to return to work.

People in England had been told to avoid trains, tubes, buses and trams where possible, working from home to limit the spread of coronavirus.

However, a report in The Sunday Telegraph said ministers were preparing to change this advice as part of the next step towards economic recovery.

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Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he wanted people to return to work "if they can", adding: "I think it's very important that people should try to lead their lives more normally".

There are also financial concerns for the transport companies, many of which have suffered huge losses due to the fall in passenger numbers.

A Whitehall source told The Sunday Telegraph: "It is costing a great deal of money to run all these train services with so few people on them.

"Different departments are looking at ways to ease in the message of avoiding public transport. The best way to do this, and when, is currently under discussion.

"There is some debate about how best to get the message across that the government wants to allow more people to travel."

It comes as it was revealed that 44,798 people have died in hospitals, care homes and the community after testing positive for coronavirus in the UK as at 5pm on Friday.

However, it is thought that the number of all deaths involving COVID-19 is more than 55,000.

Meanwhile, lockdown rules continue to ease, with beauticians, tattooists and tanning salons allowed to reopen from Monday.

Indoor gyms, swimming pools and sports facilities can reopen on 25 July.