From 11.59pm tonight lockdown restrictions will end and Victoria will return to its “COVIDSafe Summer” restrictions that were in place over the Christmas period. After only 2 new cases were recorded in the last 7 days, and both connected to the state’s Holiday Inn cluster, the government has made the announcement of relaxing the restrictions.
“They pose no risk to public health more broadly,” Premier Daniel Andrews said.
Masks will be required only on public transport, in rideshare vehicles and taxis, and at large retail settings, such as shopping centres, supermarkets, department stores and indoor markets.
More visitors at home
Victorians will be able to invite up to 30 visitors at home, up from 5.
Outdoors gathering can be up to 100 people are allowed to gather outdoors.
For the first time and it will help greatly the foot traffic in retail precincts, public and private sector office workers will be able to return to the office at a capacity of 75 per cent.
“That is very important, in terms of retail trade, hospitality, food and beverage – that whole part of the economy,” Mr Andrews said.
Hospitals and Aged Care
Restrictions on the number of visits to hospitals and aged care facilitates will also ease in the state.
However, some individual sites may have their own rules in place, Mr Andrews said.
Circuit breaker snap lockdown worked
The premier said the state’s five-day lockdown had been “effective” in controlling the Holiday Inn outbreak.
“That strategy worked,” he said.
“It is with confidence that we can return to the COVIDSafe Summer settings, but none of that is possible without the extraordinary efforts of every single Victorian and I’m deeply grateful to each and everyone of you.”
One exposure site STILL remaining – Coles Express service station in East Bentliegh
The only exposure site still remaining is the Coles Express service station in East Bentliegh, marked as tier three.
Anyone who attended the site on February 18 during the specified time is being asked to come forward for testing and isolate.
With the 14-day incubation period coming to an end today, all other exposure sites have been formally closed.
“The vast majority of people are now coming off the isolation period and we are grateful for their support,” Victoria’s Testing Commander Jeroen Weimar said.
Gold Standard Contact Tracing
Victoria with a swift response – the circuit breaker lockdown managed to control a significant outbreak. This time Victorian Health authorities managed over 3500 primary close contacts at the peak of the outbreak, 99 per cent of them contacted within the 48 hours.
While snap lockdown restrictions end, tonight (from 1am tomorrow), Queensland will also end its border ban to those from Greater Melbourne.