A state of disaster has been declared by the Victorian state government as the Australian city of Melbourne tightens COVID-19 restrictions, limiting movement through a nightly curfew among other new rules.
Premier Daniel Andrews warned that from 6 p.m. on Aug. 2 police will have additional powers to make sure people are complying with public health directions.
The shock move to enforce a rare health-related curfew in the city comes as COVID-19 case numbers in the state continue to yo-yo, with the new “stage four” restrictions to run for six weeks until Sept. 13.
“Im not prepared to accept that or accept days and days and days of hundreds of cases and more and more death,” Andrews said in a press conference Aug. 2.
“These are significant steps and not taken lightly.
“If we dont make these changes, were not going to get through this. We need to do more.”
Under the tighter restrictions, Melbourne residents will only be allowed to exercise for an hour a day and cant travel more than 5km (3.1 miles) from home for the purposes of shopping or exercise.
Only one person per household will be able to shop for groceries each day, while recreational sports such as tennis and golf will be banned altogether.
Metropolitan Melbourne will be under a nightly curfew, between the hours of 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. from Sunday night with some exemptions for those providing care and travelling to and from work.
Anyone caught breaking curfew or outside a 5km radius of their principal place of residence will be handed a $1,652 (US$1,179) on-the-spot fine.
“The time for discretion, the time for accepting some of this bad behaviour is over,” Andrews said.
From midnight on Aug. 5, weddings will not be permitted unless granted an exemption on compassionate grounds.
Rules for funerals remain unchanged.
All school students, including Melbourne-based VCE pupils, will learn from home apart from some “special school” attendees and those whose parents have work commitments.
The change will come into effect from Aug. 5, with Aug. 4 a statewide pupil free day.
Regional Victoria will move to stage three stay-at-home restrictions, with restaurants, cafes, bars, gyms and other businesses to shut from midnight on Aug. 5.
People will only be allowed outdoors to shop for food and essential items, provide care and caregiving, and Read More – Source