Hull residents have been urged to put safety before sunshine over the bank holiday.
The city’s hospitals warned this week that a significant surge in coronavirus cases is predicted “within weeks”.
And Julia Weldon, director of Public Health at Hull City Council, said the need to heed advice and stay at home “cannot be overstated”.
She said: “We continue to work closely with our local partners in the NHS and our other health services and we know how seriously they are taking this expected increase in cases.
“They have made incredibly detailed and robust plans for how they can go on delivering care even when people needing treatment surge and available staff fall due to illness or self-isolation. But they need your help.
“We’re not shying away from the fact that there are difficult times ahead. We’re being honest with people about that and about the fact that our NHS will only be able to cope if people also do their bit.
⚠️ Coronavirus: anyone can get it, anyone can spread it ⚠️
— Public Health England (@PHE_uk) April 9, 2020
“We need you to stay at home. I can’t overstate how important this is – it could literally be a matter of life and death. We must listen to the government and all behave as if we have coronavirus because absolutely any of us could.”
Residents were urged to only leaving the house for the essentials – food, medicines and exercise – as infrequently as possible.
And Julia said this is vital to help put the region’s hospitals in the strongest possible position.
“We know it’s not easy, particularly for those of you who don’t have outside space. This is not something we would ask you to do unless it was gravely serious,” she said.
“If we act now we give the NHS the best possible chance to get through this and eventually recover. We also minimise the number of people who will get sick.
“We’re all more aware and more grateful than ever before for the NHS and other frontline workers making huge personal sacrifices to keep us safe. The best way to show our appreciation is with this pone simple act of staying at home”.
Find the latest government advice on coronavirus and social distancing here.