Melbourne goes into lockdown with another 671 cases

Clay Curtis
August 2, 2020

Six of the deaths are linked to aged care facilities.

Victoria's case numbers have climbed to 174 per 100,000 residents.

Andrews said hospital nurses had now worked more than 570 shifts in care homes.

From Sunday night, a daily curfew from 8pm to 5am will be put in place across the city, and exercise will be limited to one hour daily within five km of home.

Victoria now makes up the vast majority of new coronavirus cases in Australia, with 671 new diagnoses and seven deaths in the past 24 hours. We have got to limit the amount of movement, therefore limiting the amount of transmission of this virus.

Residents will also not be allowed to travel further than 5km, or 3.1 miles, from their homes while the measures are in place.

The premier warned there will be zero tolerance for those violating the new curfew orders. "It's the only way we'll get to the other side of this", Andrews said.

"It's not necessarily a boyfriend-girlfriend situation and we definitely use that phrase 'sexual partner" ... so there's a definite loophole for people who are wanting to hook up.

"The time for leniency, the time for warnings and cautions is over".

Restaurants and cafes may continue to offer takeaway and home delivery, and bottle shops will remain open.

All students across the state will return to home-based learning and childcare centres will be closed. Only those carrying out essential work, or seeking or providing care, will be allowed out.

Weddings will also be banned in the city.

The state has been battered by the coronavirus pandemic far more severely than the rest of Australia in recent weeks, but other officials are on alert as they hope to prevent a second wave in their states.

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All new restrictions will be in effect for six weeks from the date they are imposed. Again, the five-kilometre rule will apply.

Education Minister Dan Tehan told Sky News that the federal government would "absolutely" support Victoria in ramping up its measures.

"The AMA's position has been very clear: we called for a New Zealand-style full lockdown two weeks ago", Victorian AMA president Julian Rait said.

"With this lockdown there will be mental health challenges. It's understandable for somebody to be feeling depressed or anxious, isolated and that we understand and there is support", he said on Sunday.

Mr Hunt asked Victorians to draw on their resilience.

"We need to do more".

He also urged Victorians to reach out to each other.

"These are the decisions made because anything short of this will not keep us safe", Andrews said, adding anything less "will see it drag on for months and months and months".

"I know these are hard decisions".

Premier Daniel Andrews says the state of disaster proclamation gave police greater power.

There are now 1,500 members of the ADF assisting in the coronavirus response. State health authorities updated mask usage recommendations to include public-facing workers, worshippers and residents near clusters.

New South Wales recorded just 21 new cases. The state has warned of the potential for tougher protection measures.

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