Isle of Man re-enters lockdown after 'unexplained' Covid cases detected

The Isle of Man has re-entered lockdown after 'unexplained' coronavirus cases were detected within the community.

Council of Ministers agreed the series of measures that came into effect from midnight on Wednesday 3 March for 21 days following the new cases.

In a press conference Chief Minister Howard Quayle said the move followed the discovery of "further cases that have caused us concern", including two where the source was unknown.


  • 'Stay at home' - unless getting food, daily exercise, if you cannot work from home, or for a medical appointment or to be vaccinated or tested.

  • Two-metre social distancing returns.

  • Face coverings 'strongly advised' - mandatory on public transport

  • No household mixing.

  • All hospitality and leisure venues to close.

  • All non-essential retail to close.

  • Outdoor trades to continue.

  • Schools to close for majority of pupils.

Following the detection of a case at a school, all pupils in Year 8 at St Ninian’s Lower School in Bemahague, and everyone they live with, have been told to stay at home and wait to be contacted by the Covid-111 service.

Mr Quayle added: "There is of course still a great deal that we don’t know. But what is also clear is that, as we said on Sunday there is transmission in our community that we cannot see and that we do not understand.

"We can now see this is not an isolated couple of cases but more widespread."

The island removed all social distancing measures at the end of January after getting the virus under control.

But, Director of Public Health on the Island, Dr Henrietta Ewart, told the conference that despite successes with the vaccination programme, "we need to intervene now".

She continued: "If we do so now – and if everyone does their bit– we will again stamp out the current outbreak that seems to be moving under the surface of our community.

"Once we get into the future, and our most vulnerable are protected, we may be able to take things differently. But right now, we need to eliminate this outbreak."

Financial support measures will be reactivated, including MERA, Salary Support and the Business Support Scheme.


The Government says an initial case stemmed from an employee of the Steam Packet Company (SPC) and there had ben a 'clear train of transmission' to all the identified cases.

Meetings had been held after a 'breakdown' in adherence to the self-isolation rules within the SPC, with talks taking concluding there was 'miscommunication' between the Company and the Isle of Man Government.

Since the initial case in mid-February, the virus has spread to various locations across the island.

The government has listed a number of 'low-risk' locations and asked that people self-isolate if they were at the specified locations and go on to develop symptoms.

The full list can be found here.