Residents across multiple Western Australian areas are waking up to lockdown conditions for the first time in almost a year, after a hotel quarantine security guard tested positive to coronavirus.
The man in his 20s returned the positive test yesterday, but had apparently travelled to 16 locations in the three days before he got tested.
Authorities believe he may have contracted the highly infectious UK strain of the virus, forcing the whole of Perth into a snap five day lockdown.
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“When the man was working at this hotel there were four active cases of COVID-19 in hotel quarantine,” Premier Mark McGowan said.
“Of those four cases we have at least three confirmed variant strains, two UK and one South African.
“We are told the guard was working on the same floor as a positive UK variant case,” he said.
It’s prompted widespread testing, rapid contact tracing and panic buying across the state, breaking WA’s 10 month streak of no community transmission.
Other states and territories have begun closing their borders to Western Australia, while it gets on top of the potential outbreak.
Anyone coming into Queensland from Western Australia will now have to go into 14 days of hotel quarantine.
While anyone already in Queensland who may have been in Metropolitan Perth, Peel or the South West regions since January 25 is being urged to come forward and get tested and isolate while waiting for the result.
Perth’s lockdown is due to come to an end at 6.00pm on Friday, provided there’s no evidence that the virus has spread in the community.
Schools will stay closed for another week before the 2021 year begins.