Hot spot suburbs could be locked down

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews has warned that individual suburbs showing “significant community transmission” could be placed in local-level lockdown if necessary.

Addressing the state’s spike in new confirmed cases of coronavirus, Mr Andrews said he would not rule out the possibility of locking down hot spots — either suburbs or local government areas.

“It may be the case in the days ahead … where we have seen the data tells us a very clear story that there are extra cases and the highest number of cases, we may need to, for instance, reinstitute the stay at home except for the four reasons,” he said.

“We all remember that time, it was deeply frustrating but it was very effective. We may need to go back to that setting in given geographical areas.”

The four acceptable reasons to leave one’s home would be shopping for food and supplies, care and caregiving, exercise, and study or work, if it could not be done from home.

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The Premier emphasised that he was not suggesting a return to lockdown for the entire state, but only in those suburbs seeing a spike in infections.

“These are low numbers. We are acting quickly and early to get back on top of it.

“But if there were any restrictions, I think they would almost certainly be focused on those areas where we are seeing significant community transmission because that’s where the risk is.”

Australia’s Victoria state is set to reimpose household restrictions from Monday after recording double-digit increases in COVID-19 cases for a fourth consecutive day.

Victoria Premier Daniel Andrews says household gatherings will be restricted to five guests and outdoor gatherings to 10 people until midnight July 12. Andrews said Victoria recorded 25 new cases on Saturday, the biggest daily increase in two months.

The planned easing of restrictions for cafes, restaurants and pubs, from a maximum of 20 guests to a maximum of 50, will be deferred for three weeks. Businesses that are set to open for the first time Monday, including gyms and cinemas, will be allowed to do so but with a maximum of 20 people. More than half of the of the new cases in Victoria have come from family-to- family transmission, Andrews said, adding: “I’m frustrated by it. I’m disappointed by it.”

– with wires.



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