Explainer: What is lockdown?


June 8, 2020


Explainer: What is lockdown?

Nepal is in lockdown since March 24, 2020 due to the spread of COVID-19 pandemic. (Photo: Khabarhub)


A lockdown is a situation when it is considered safer to be inside your house or room, or a locked down area.

Lockdowns can happen for several reasons such as pandemic, police chases, violent offenses, robberies, police caution, someone describing a dangerous person in the area, threat against a facility or a school, a dangerous animal, an active shooter, etc.

A lockdown particularly needs people stay indoors. However, they can go out to buy essentials during fixed hours.

There will be curbs on travel by road, air, railways. People can only venture out if they have government-issued passes.

All commercial establishments except the essential services and commodities will be asked to shut shops.

Anyone disobeying the orders or the regulations shall be deemed to have committed an offence.

A lockdown is, in fact, a requirement for people to stay indoors usually due to some specific risks to themselves or to other people if they move freely.

The term ‘stay-at-home’ is used for lockdowns.

The term is also sometimes used for a prison protocol that prevents people or information from leaving the area.

It is often imposed to protect people inside a building, compound, facility or, for example, from a threat or other external event.

Full lockdown

A full lockdown requires people to stay where they are, and will not be allowed to enter or exit a building or rooms within it.

Drill lockdown

A drill lockdown is imposed in the absence of a threat, to familiarize people with what they need to do during emergencies or lockdowns.

Preventive lockdown

A preventive lockdown is an action plan enforced to address an unusual scenario in system to prevent danger to ensure people’s security or safety, system and organization.

Emergency lockdown

An emergency lockdown is imposed when there is an imminent threat to the lives to humans.

Lockdowns usually limit activities or movements in a community while allowing only a few organizations to function normally.

It should be noted that during the COVID-19 lockdown, the term was used for actions related to quarantines or stay-at-home orders.

(With inputs from Agencies)