ALL four UK governments have released a joint statement warning the country is seeing "the start of a second wave" of coronavirus

The UK Government, Scottish Government, Welsh Government and Northern Ireland Executive released the stark update as strict new rules were brought in for students in Scotland.

They said: "Covid-19 threatens lives, health, prosperity and our way of life. 

"We have taken action to protect the health of our citizens, communities, and economies. 

"However, the threat remains all too real."

They said cases are "rising rapidly and we must take action to stop an exponential increase that could overwhelm our health services".

The governments reaffirmed their shared commitment to suppressing the virus to the lowest possible level and keeping it there, while striving to return life to as normal as possible.

They pledged to work to provide tests to those with symptoms and trace their contacts, and to respond quickly to any localised outbreaks. 

They said they will prepare for the pressures the winter will bring and seek to protect the most vulnerable in society from the effects of the virus, while helping the economy and society recover.

They also pledged to work towards reaching a long-term solution in the form of a treatment or vaccine as soon as possible.

The governments said they are committed to maintaining transparency and openness with the public, coordinating and cooperating as much as possible and sharing and acting on the best data, research and science.

They said: "The ongoing fight against Covid-19 will continue to require much from us all, wherever we live. 

"We ask that everybody endeavours to adhere to the rules and advice designed for our safety, as this is the only way to keep the virus suppressed, and make further progress on the path back to normality. 

"Failing to do so will put everyone else at risk. 

"So in the weeks and months ahead we must carry on pulling together to protect and care for those most at risk, and keep the virus under control."

Students in Scotland have been told not to go to pubs this weekend under tough new rules.