Greater Melbourne residents will be housebound for at least another week, with the State Government today extending the city’s lockdown for another seven days.
It comes after Victoria recorded six new locally acquired COVID-19 cases on Wednesday from more than 51,000 tests.
There are now 67 active coronavirus infections across the whole state.
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Victoria’s Acting Premier James Merlino said that for the next week, residents in Greater Melbourne will still only be allowed to leave home for five reasons.
Those include shopping for food and supplies, authorised work and study, care giving, exercise and getting vaccinated.
However, the radius for exercise and shopping has been extended from 5km to 10km from 11.59pm tomorrow night.
Year 11 and Year 12 students will also return to face-to-face learning.
“On the advice of the Chief Health Officer Professor Sutton the current restrictions remain in place for Melbourne for a further seven days with some small changes,” Mr Merlino said.
“I know that this is not the news that everyone wants to hear for Melbourne today, but given the cases that we’ve had and that we are still seeing, the Chief Health Officer had no choice but to put this advice to government and the government had no choice but to accept that advice from the Chief Health Officer.
“If we don’t do this… this thing will get away. This variant of concern will become uncontrollable and people will die. No one wants to repeat last winter.”
Mr Merlino also warned that travel will remain off-limits for quite some time even if the state’s circuit-breaker lockdown does prove to be successful.
“I want to be up-front with people that even if all goes well, we won’t be able to have people from Melbourne travelling to regional Victoria during the Queen’s birthday long weekend,” he said.
However, life will return to somewhat normal for residents in Regional Victoria from 11.59pm tomorrow night, with the five reasons to leave home removed and businesses given the green light to reopen with the proviso they check the IDs of every single person they serve.
There will also be no limit on the distance regional Victorians can travel from home, however they will only be allowed to travel to Melbourne for a “permitted” reason and will be bound by the restrictions there.
Outdoor gathering limits are restricted to ten people, while restaurants can host 50 people under the one-person per four-square-metre rule.
Ten people will be allowed at weddings, with 50 allowed at funerals.