WA limits alcohol sales during COVID-19 pandemic

The announcement was made on Wednesday. Source: Getty

New COVID-19 measures have been announced in WA.

Western Australia is the first state to restrict takeaway alcohol sales during the coronavirus pandemic.

Each bottle shop customer will be limited to either one carton of beer, cider or pre-mixed spirits; three bottles of wine; one litre of spirits; one litre of fortified wine; or a combination of any two but not of the same product.

"Failure to comply with these conditions may result in penalties," Liquor Stores Association of WA chief executive Peter Peck told members in an email.

WA police commissioner Chris Dawson previously warned restrictions would be imposed if there was panic buying at bottle shops.

Premier Mark McGowan said the restrictions were not intended to stop people from having a responsible drink.

"They are relatively minor, sensible measures," he said in a statement on Wednesday.

"Alcohol-related issues take up an enormous amount of resources in our health system.

"These are resources we simply cannot afford to spare during the COVID-19 situation."

Restaurants and cafes are only serving takeaway.
Restaurants and cafes are only serving takeaway.

The restrictions will be reviewed after two weeks.

It comes as the state's police union calls for priority access to testing for exposed frontline officers, after four officers had to restrain a woman who claimed to be infected with the virus.

She had earlier been the subject of two other police jobs, including one at a Woolworths store where she screamed she had coronavirus.

"It beggars belief that our government is not doing more to protect the police who are protecting the community," union president Harry Arnott said in a statement.

"Our members were already overworked and under-resourced before this health crisis, so any reduction in numbers caused by quarantining, isolation and illness will place police officers under extreme pressure."

Mr Arnott said the union also had major concerns about access to personal protective equipment.

Meanwhile, WA's oldest dairy Brownes is trialling a revival of its "milko" delivery service, but says there is limited capacity.

"With panic buying prevalent, and staying at home becoming a necessity, we know that a lot of families have been struggling to get even their basic groceries," Brownes Dairy said in a social media post.

The number of coronavirus cases in WA surged by 35 on Tuesday, including two young children from the same family, bringing the state's total to 175.

Eleven people are in hospital, four of those in intensive care.

Australians must stay at least 1.5 metres away from other people. Indoors, there must be a density of no more than one person per four square metres of floor space.

If you believe you may have contracted the virus, call your doctor, don’t visit, or contact the national Coronavirus Health Information Hotline on 1800 020 080.

If you are struggling to breathe or experiencing a medical emergency, call 000. 

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