Edinburgh, Nov 20 (IANS) More than two million people across Scotland were bracing for the country's most stringent coronavirus restrictions set to come into force on Friday evening.
Under the level four rules, which will come into force at 6 p.m. in 11 council areas, including Glasgow, non-essential shops, pubs, restaurants, hairdressers, gyms and visitor attractions will all remain closed except for schools, the BBC reported.
The restrictions, which will remain in place till December 11, will be accompanied by legally-enforceable travel bans, under which people can be fined by the police for travelling in or out of the council areas unless it was essential.
The move is aimed at driving down "stubbornly and worryingly high" levels of the virus in western and central parts of Scotland which have been worst hit by the pandemic's second wave, according to the government.
Meanwhile, Scotland's other council areas will remain in their current levels for now, although East Lothian and Midlothian will move from level three to level two from next November 24.
Virus rates in these 11 council areas last week ranged from 158 new cases per 100,000 people in West Lothian to 277 in Glasgow - all of which were above the Scotland-wide rate of 140 cases per 100,000.
Scotland's coronavirus cases have increased to 85,612, while the death toll stands at 3,427.