LEO VARADKAR has issued a very frank warning to the people of Dublin ahead of what is expected to be a Government announcement about new public health restrictions in the city.
The Tanaiste spoke to reporters on Monday evening and admitted that drastic action was to needed to keep coronavirus case numbers in the city from rising.
"The truth is the situation in Dublin is worrying," Varadkar said.
"We have seen a situation where the incidence of the virus was as low as five or six per 100,000 [of population] over 14 days, now it's hitting about 80.
"Depending on how you count it, a 10 or 20 fold increase of the virus in Dublin within the space of a few weeks.
"And while that has not yet resulted in a dramatic increase in people in hospital or ICUs or deaths, the truth is it is probably going to head that way if we don’t get on top of it."
Today, the Government is expected to outline its 'Living with COVID' plan, which is set to lay the groundwork for the national pandemic management strategy over the next six to nine months.
It's likely that as part of the announcement, the Government will also declare a number of extra measures for the Irish capital, which could resemble something close to a localised lockdown - akin to what happened in Kildare, Laois and Offaly last month.
Pubs in the capital are expected to remain shut for the time being as well, despite the fact that September 21 has been confirmed as the day that all 'wet' pubs in the country are allowed to reopen, though until the announcement is made nothing can be confirmed.