Daniel Andrews says Victoria is 'well placed' to ease lockdown as state records two new local cases

Two new locally acquired coronavirus cases were detected on the fourth day of lockdown.

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews said the state is 'well placed' to ease restrictions after tomorrow.

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews said the state is 'well placed' to ease restrictions after tomorrow. Source: AAP

Premier Daniel Andrews said Victoria is "well placed" to ease coronavirus restrictions at the end of the state's five-day lockdown tomorrow.

Victoria has recorded two new locally acquired cases of coronavirus as the state's "snap lockdown" enters its fourth day. 

The two new cases were announced on Tuesday morning and come from almost 24,000 tests processed. 

Both of the two new cases were household primary close contacts of a previously reported case linked to the Holiday Inn, bringing that cluster to 19 cases. 

The two new cases have already been isolating at home on health advice. There were no new exposure sites connected to these cases. 

There were also an additional two cases in hotel quarantine, bringing the total number of active cases in and out of hotel quarantine in the state to 25. 

Mr Andrews on Tuesday said the strategy of the five-day snap lockdown was working, but added he wasn't able to say definitively whether the lockdown would end on Wednesday night. 

"This strategy is working, we are well placed to make changes tomorrow night," Mr Andrews told reporters. 

"With a relatively small number of new cases...we are very well placed. But we won't know, we won't be able to make a final call on that until sometime tomorrow," he added. 

Mr Andrews said no decision had been made about whether Victoria would return to its previous restriction settings on Wednesday or whether some restrictions may remain in place. 

"We will get these rules off as quickly as we possible can, as safely as we possibly can," he said. 

"We just have to wait and see how many more cases and the nature of those cases over the next 24 hours," Mr Andrews added. 

Mr Andrews confirmed that international flights will not resume from Thursday, saying there will be an update on those flights later this week.

Mr Andrews also said the state government would build a dedicated quarantine facility for returned travellers, modelled off the Howard Springs facility in the Northern Territory. 

He said they were looking at sites near Melbourne (Tullamarine) and Avalon airports as potential sites, saying it was important that there would be space for open air-facility to reduce the risk associated with CBD hotel quarantine. 

"This is not zero risk, but this will get the risk down," Mr Andrews said. 

Meanwhile, residents at the Holiday Inn on Flinders Lane, especially for Covid-positive patients and those with Covid-symptoms will be transferred to another hotel after water damage over the weekend. 

Residents are being transferred to an alternative health hotel while repairs are being conducted after sprinklers went off and damaged four floors of the building. 

It is unrelated to the outbreak at the Holiday Inn at Melbourne Airport, which led that hotel to being shutdown. 

People in Australia must stay at least 1.5 metres away from others. Check your jurisdiction's restrictions on gathering limits.

If you are experiencing cold or flu symptoms, stay home and arrange a test by calling your doctor or contact the Coronavirus Health Information Hotline on 1800 020 080. News and information is available in 63 languages at sbs.com.au/coronavirus.

Please check the relevant guidelines for your state or territory: NSWVictoriaQueenslandWestern AustraliaSouth AustraliaNorthern TerritoryACTTasmania.

Published 16 February 2021 at 8:38am, updated 16 February 2021 at 11:55am
By Jarni Blakkarly