Australia's Victoria state orders 36 suburban lockdowns to curb new outbreaks

Victorian State Premier Daniel Andrews addresses a press conference in Melbourne Australia Tuesday

The majority of cases have been from community transmission, prompting the state's Premier Daniel Andrews to order a lockdown of hot spot postcodes from 11.59pm on Wednesday until at least July 29.

In the 24 hours to Tuesday, Victoria reported 64 new cases, down from the previous day's 75 new cases.

He also scrapped plans to reopen the state's border on July 20, citing concerns about the rising spike of coronavirus cases in Melbourne.

"This is the public health advice".

"These are extraordinary steps, these are not things we have had to do in the past but such is the nature of this virus, it is so wildly infectious that if we don't take these steps now we will finish up in a situation [where rather] than locking down ten post codes we will be locking down every postcode", Andrews said.

"Victoria Police will be actively - actively - enforcing these suburban lockdown, this stay-at-home order", Andrews said.

He added main transport corridors "in and out of these suburbs will be the subject of booze bus-type checks".

Coronavirus hot spots in Melbourne's inner north and west have been put into lockdown in an effort to contain an outbreak of the deadly disease in Victoria.

From July 3, pubs, cafes, restaurants and clubs will not be restricted to a maximum number of people, provided there is 4 sq/m of space per person.

All affected businesses will be given a A$5000 ($5354) grant or a payroll tax refund.

Tough border measures will also be introduced for anyone coming from Victoria, including mandatory hotel quarantine.

Mr Andrews said the flight diversion would last for a fortnight.

The borders were scheduled to open on July 20, however in the light of Victoria's surge in coronavirus cases, the SA Government has chose to keep the Victorian border closed while considering opening to NSW and the ACT.

"We have worked so hard to get ourselves into a very enviable position and we are not prepared to go backwards", South Australia state premier Steven Marshall told reporters.

Thirteen of the new cases have been linked to known outbreaks and 20 have been identified through routine testing, while 31 cases remain under investigation.



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