The UK has today confirmed almost 700 more cases of the killer Covid-19 disease, in the biggest daily spike yet as fears of a crisis continued to grip the nation.
More than 2,600 patients have now been struck down with the deadly infection in the UK.
The news emerges after a third patient in Scotland died of coronavirus, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon announced.
Ms Sturgeon also announced schools would close because they are now seeing too many teachers and staff taking time off for them to function normally.
She announced in a speech this afternoon that all schools and nurseries in Scotland would close from Friday this week and that she could not promise they would open again before summer.
She said the country was ‘heading into stormy waters’ and that the decision was a ‘really difficult decision’ but that it was now inevitable.
England remains the worst-hit country in the UK, with more than 1,500 confirmed infections and 67 deaths.
But there have been around 200 confirmed in infections in Scotland and now three deaths; 136 cases and two deaths in Wales; and 62 cases in Northern Ireland.