LIVERPOOL revellers packed the streets last night before Tier 3 lockdown hits today – as the city’s intensive care units reach 90 per cent capacity.
Dozens of people packed into the city and were filmed dancing and chanting hours before they are plunged into severe restrictions.
The number of people being admitted to hospitals in Liverpool are the third highest in Europe.
Councillor Paul Brant, cabinet member for adult health and social care at Liverpool City Council, said today intensive care units in the city are now at 90 per cent capacity.
He told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “Our intensive, critical care beds are filling up very fast.
“The most recent figures I’ve seen suggest they are over 90% full and our acute hospital trusts have occupancy levels of Covid-positive patients of over 250.
“At the current rate of increase, we would expect Liverpool to surpass the peak of the first wave probably within the next seven to 10 days.”
This week Boris Johnson unveiled his three-tier local lockdowns — with Liverpool immediately hit with the highest restrictions.
The city has one of the worst infection rates in the country, with 669.5 cases per 100,000 people.
The restrictions will be in place for at least four weeks, when they will be up for review by the Government.
TOUGH TIMES AHEAD
And pubs and bars will be closed, but restaurants will be allowed to stay open.
Pubs which serve “substantial” meals will be able to stay open. Betting shops, gyms and casinos will also be told to close.
The PM was last night under increasing pressure to order a nationwide mini-lockdown – with a 60 per cent chance he will bring in the measure over half-term.
Growing demands for a “circuit breaker” to tackle surging Covid cases came as Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer called for a shutdown of up to three weeks.
Scientists claim this could save thousands of lives, but Mr Johnson has so far rejected warnings from his medical advisers that a major reset is required.
But there is a growing belief in his inner circle that the move is inevitable.
Mr Johnson said on Monday the new rules were needed because “transmission is rising” and it is essential the NHS does not become overwhelmed to the point it cannot carry out other services.
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If new restrictions are not brought in, Mr Johnson said: “Our doctors and nurses would be simply unable to devote themselves to other treatments for cancer and heart disease and hundreds more that have already, and would be delayed again.
“(This would cause) serious long term damage to the health of the nation.”
The daily death toll rose above 100 for first time in four months yesterday — taking the total to 43,018.