Why weather could be to blame for coronavirus North-South Covid divide

According to a top scientist, we can blame the weather for the dramatic spike in cases of coronavirus up North.

This week the Prime Minister Boris Johnson ’s chief scientific and medical advisors set out the shocking statistics of Covid-19 cases across the UK – showing a clear North-South divide.

While Sir Patrick Vallance and Professor Chris Whitty didn’t offer a reason to why this was, another scientist sees a clear link between the weather and Covid-19 outbreaks.

Colder temperatures, less sunlight and more rain in the North and Scotland could be the reason.

Manchester, which saw a drastic spike in cases in August, endured twice as much rainfall as London.

In September, the North West was recording twice as many infections as the next worst-hit region.

In London and the South of England, infection rates have stayed relatively stable in comparison.

The South of the country had at least 30mm less rainfall than the North of England and Scotland.

Southerners also enjoyed 40 more hours of sunshine than Scotland, and 20 more than the North of England.

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Dr Andrew Preston, expert in infectious diseases from the University of Bath, told Mail Online it was “entirely reasonable” to draw a link between the different weather conditions and the spread of coronavirus.

This is because people aren’t spending as much time in the sun, where coronavirus is less likely to spread.

It also causes vitamin D levels to drop, which research has found is important in fighting the virus.

People spending more time indoors, where there is poor ventilation and more difficult to practice social distancing, is considered a big driver of Covid-19 transmission.

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Studies have also shown that coronavirus is less likely to survive on surfaces outside in sunlight because of the UV ray damage.

As the colder months sets in, some experts argue that other parts of the UK will soon catch up as cool temperatures drive more people indoors.

Meanwhile, other scientists have warned it could be tricky to blame the regional differences in coronavirus spikes on the weather.

Dr John McCauley, one of the world’s most eminent scientists on flu, told MailOnline that it would be “tricky” to prove a link between the virus and weather.

Professor Anthony Brookes, an expert in genomics at the University of Leicester, said that researchers are still struggling to understand the reason due to lack of data on the number of tests done.

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