Melbourne Emerges from Stage Four Lockdown

Written by James Shaw

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Following a dramatic drop in COVID-19 case numbers, the city of Melbourne officially emerged from its stage four lockdown yesterday.  

State Premier Daniel Andrews announced the news in a press conference on Monday after the state recorded zero new COVID-19 cases. Premier Andrews said he was confident the state was “firmly on top of this virus” and could move into the Third Step.

The ease in restrictions will see Melbourne cafes, restaurants and pubs reopen with a limit of 20 diners indoors and 50 diners outdoors. Density limits of one person per 4 square metres, record keeping and COVIDSafe Plans are all mandatory.

Retailers in Melbourne are also preparing for reopening after 2 months of shut down. However, there will still be limits on the number of people allowed in stores and venues at any one time. Face masks remain mandatory and shoppers must maintain 1.5 metres from others.

A travel restriction of 25km will remain in place until 8 November and masks remain mandatory.

Restrictions will again loosen from 8th November if the state is able to “continue driving case numbers down”, said Premier Andrews. If this is successful it will mean diner numbers can increase to 40 inside and 70 outside.  

“We want to reach COVID Normal by Christmas and right now, we’re on track to do that,” said the Premier.

Diners have flocked to book tables as operators rush to get ready to resume dine-in trade for the first time in months.

While many venues will reopen as soon as possible, restricted customer numbers are a barrier for others.

“75 per cent of Victoria’s pubs will remain closed unless more reasonable limits are allowed – this extreme limit on venue capacity will not result in many people returning to work,” says AHA National CEO Stephen Ferguson.

To learn more on the current restriction levels for Victoria click here.

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