Western Australia Premier Mark McGowan said the region is facing an “emerging and serious issue” as it experiences its first community transmission in 12 months. Perth and Peel will enter a three-day lockdown Friday at midnight.
Speaking to the media on Friday, McGowan said the new measures would be implemented for the next three days. “From midnight tonight people need to stay in the Perth and Peel region and won’t be able to leave unless you have an exemption.” He went on to note that there will be four reasons to leave the house, including work, shopping for essentials, healthcare needs, and one hour of exercise with a maximum of four people once a day.
McGowan also noted the difficulty involved in responding to the new situation. “I know this is hard to take, and I wish we didn’t need to be doing this, but we can’t take any chances with the virus.”
The lockdown comes after a person who spent time in Perth tested positive for Covid-19. The individual first completed a hotel quarantine and then stayed with a friend and her two children. The friend has also tested positive for the virus, while the status of the children has yet to be confirmed. There are concerns that the virus has begun to spread within the community, which has seen no locally transmitted cases for 12 months.
McGowan stated that the initial carrier of the virus then took a flight on April 21 from Perth to Melbourne. Upon arriving in Melbourne, the individual was identified as having the virus. The authorities now intend to contact people who were on the flight through the COVIDSafe app, which monitors infections and alerts the public to the spread of the virus.
According to the Department of Health in Western Australia, there have been 982 confirmed cases of Covid-19 since the outbreak last year. At the moment, 28 people have the virus.
The World Health Organization reports that there have been 910 Covid-related deaths in Australia and 29,578 cases since the outbreak began.
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