Victoria’s worsening outbreak of the Delta strain of coronavirus has forced the introduction of new restrictions in Greater Melbourne.
The state recorded 77 new cases on Saturday and Premier Daniel Andrews announced a snap lockdown of regional areas, which will be under the same conditions as Melbourne – except for the nightly curfew – from 1pm.
On top of the lockdown news, Mr Andrews announced several new restrictions for Melbourne, which has seen its lockdown period extended to September 2.
Childcare has been moved to permit-based system for essential workers, while construction in the city has been reduced to 25 per cent.
Further, changes will be made to Melbourne businesses operating in high-risk industries like abattoirs and meat, poultry and seafood processing, with additional obligations such as workforce limits and mandatory surveillance testing to be implemented.
Prospective aged care residents will not be allowed to inspect facilities under the new restrictions, while masks for primary school children have been recommended.
“There is every good reason and it is essential that people come forward as soon as they register symptoms,” the Premier said.
“There are in the cases we are reporting today … there are some people who have not been quick to get tested.
“They have perhaps had symptoms for a period of time, and unknowingly, they have spread this virus. So it is really, really important, really important, that everyone who has got symptoms goes and acts on the symptoms — goes and gets tested.”
Victoria is under heavy threat of having cases explode after new cases were detected in Shepparton.
“It does show regional Victoria is under threat,“ Dr Sutton told the media on Saturday.
“That’s why we’ve declared all restrictions in place in Melbourne will apply for regional Victoria.”