Coronavirus: Isle of Man to begin easing lockdown restrictions

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DouglasImage source, David Kneale
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Tuesday's data showed there had been 307 positive tests for coronavirus on the island and nine deaths

The Isle of Man is to begin easing its coronavirus lockdown restrictions, the chief minister has said.

From 06:00 GMT on Friday people will be allowed to spend an unlimited amount of time outside their homes and construction workers will be allowed to return to work.

Howard Quayle said infection rates had significantly slowed since the restrictions were introduced.

Yet despite the changes, he warned the island should "not be complacent".

Tuesday's data showed there had been 307 positive tests for coronavirus on the island and nine deaths.

A review of the measures will take place during the first week of May.

In his first media briefing since testing positive for the virus on 9 April, Mr Quayle said the public had "shown the very best of Manx".

Lifting some of the restrictions would now "achieve a more sustainable, fairer and healthier balance" in daily life, he said.

People will no longer be limited to essential journeys when leaving their homes and there will be no restrictions on the length of time people can go outside.

Social distancing measures will remain in place and gatherings of two or more people from outside the same household will continue to be banned.

The island's borders will also stay closed and the temporary national speed limit of 40 mph will continue.

As well as construction workers, tradesmen and window cleaners will also be allowed to return to work "within social distancing guidelines", while hardware shops and builders' merchants can open.

However, Mr Quayle said the government would "not hesitate to close down" any business that showed a "disregard for public or workforce safety".

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