Victoria will go back into lockdown from 8pm tonight, August 5.
It is the state’s sixth lockdown, just nine days after emerging from its fifth following the spread of the Delta variant from Sydney.
Eight new Covid-19 cases were reported in Victoria today, including six from yesterday.
Reported yesterday: 6 new local cases and no new cases acquired overseas.
– 17,229 vaccine doses were administered
– 27,279 test results were received
— VicGovDH (@VicGovDH) August 4, 2021
Premier Daniel Andrews gave Victorians just under 4 hours warning after there was at least one, if not two mystery cases in Melbourne.
“I want to make it very clear, we only get one chance to act fast, only one chance to make difficult decisions that are the right decision. I would prefer to wait two or three days, I would prefer we didn’t have to make this decision now,” he said.
“But my fear is if we were to wait a few days and the advice to me from the experts if we were to wait even just a few days, there is every chance, instead of being locked down for a week, this gets away from us, we are potentially locked down until we all get vaccinated. That’s months away.”
Victoria joins Brisbane and Greater Sydney also currently in lockdown.
The restrictions list
The state-wide lockdown until August 12 comes with all-too familiar restrictions:
There are only five reasons to leave home: getting the food and the supplies you need, exercising for up to two hours, care or caregiving, authorised work or education if you can’t do it from home, or to get vaccinated at the nearest possible location.
Shopping and exercise must be done within 5km of your home or the nearest location.
Face masks will remain mandatory indoors (not at home) and outdoors unless an exception applies – this includes all workplaces and secondary schools.
Private gatherings are not permitted except for an intimate partner or nominated person visits. Public gatherings are not permitted. Exercise is limited to two people.
Childcare and Early Childhood Care will remain open. Schools will close, with primary and secondary school students returning to remote learning – except for vulnerable children, and the children of authorised workers who can learn on site. Where a parent or carer indicates that a student with a disability cannot learn from home due to vulnerability or family stress, the school must provide on-site learning for that student. This will apply to students enrolled in specialist schools and students with a disability enrolled in mainstream schools.
Higher education students will also return to remote learning, except for learning programs allowed on the Authorised Premises and Authorised Workers (APAW) List.
Andrews said the lockdown was statewide because Covid-19 was detected in wastewater in Wangaratta and because regional residents may have been exposed to the current outbreak.
“No Victorian wants to be in this position. We know that the Delta variant moves faster than anything our public health experts have seen before – and we know what we need to do to drive it down once again,” he said.
Andrews said there were no alternatives to lockdown.
“There is no debate or discussion about this, the Delta variant move that lightning speed and by the time you get the people they have already infected all the people they live with, all the people they work with, all the people they spend time with,” he said.
“We can’t allow that to happen otherwise we are locked down until Christmas. We are locked down until we get 80% of people through the vaccination program. I don’t want that. Lets try to do everything we can, surely we can agree on let’s all try to avoid that. That’s what this lockdown is about.”
The Premier said the government will announce additional support plans for the state’s businesses tomorrow.
Financial support is available if you are worried about losing pay while you wait for a test result, or if you have to self-isolate. See more at https://t.co/Jm5W1tnkFL
— VicGovDH (@VicGovDH) August 5, 2021