Vic 'well-placed' to end lockdown on time

·3-min read

Daniel Andrews says Victoria is "well-placed" to end its five-day lockdown on time, however the premier has warned some restrictions are likely to remain in place.

Victoria recorded two new locally acquired cases of COVID-19 and two infections in hotel quarantine on Tuesday, the fourth day of the state's "circuit breaker" lockdown.

Both the local cases are household contacts of a previously confirmed case linked to the Melbourne Airport Holiday Inn outbreak, which has grown to 19.

The duo were already self-isolating after attending a family function at a Coburg venue on February 6 with an infected Holiday Inn worker.

"You'd always prefer no new cases, but it is fair to say that with just two contained additional community cases today, this strategy is working," Mr Andrews told reporters on Tuesday.

"We are well-placed to be able to make changes tomorrow night."

The statewide lockdown was called on Friday afternoon amid fears the highly-infectious UK strain of the virus would spread within the community after escaping the quarantine hotel.

It is scheduled to end at 11:59pm on Wednesday, but some restrictions are likely to continue

"We'll still have to get tested if we have symptoms, we'll still have to wear masks in a number of settings, there will still be limits to the number of people that can come to your home," Mr Andrews said.

"We're looking to get back to as close to what that resting COVID-normal was as (soon as) we can but we've got to do that safely."

Mr Andrew said international flights into Melbourne, which have been diverted for the duration of the lockdown, will not resume on Thursday.

An update on the state's intake of returned travellers will be provided "later in the week", he said.

The premier confirmed the government is looking at constructing purpose-built quarantine accommodation, based on the Howard Springs facility in the Northern Territory.

"It would be a cabin-style, village-style environment, where there would be fresh air, where there would be not zero risk, but lower risk," Mr Andrews said.

He added Avalon Airport and Melbourne Airport were being considered as sites for the accommodation.

"That work is ongoing and a delegation of senior officials will go to the Northern Territory as soon as is practicable to see firsthand how the Howard Springs facility is set up," Mr Andrews said.

It not clear how the project will be funded but Prime Minister Scott Morrison indicated he is prepared to work with Mr Andrews.

Meanwhile, two locations were added to the list of exposure sites overnight - Sacca's Fruit World and BonBon Bakery, both in Broadmeadows Central shopping centre.

Victoria's COVID-19 Commander of Testing Jeroen Weimar said 3000 people are self-isolating after coming into contact with confirmed cases across 40 exposure sites, including 499 quarantine staff and guests.

In an unrelated incident, 31 people quarantining at the Holiday Inn on Flinders Lane have been transferred to the Pullman Albert Park Hotel, which previously housed international arrivals in town for the Australian Open.

COVID-19 Quarantine Victoria Commissioner Emma Cassar said the guests were being moved after sprinklers went off on the hotel's fourth floor, causing damage to four of the eight levels.

Thirteen guests at the hotel have tested positive for COVID-19 and 18 are symptomatic.

Ms Cassar defended a number of guests who were filmed wearing garbage bags over their heads during the transfer.

"We have really nervous residents who don't want their privacy displayed on the news," she said.

"It is really distressing for them."

"This stuff these people are wearing isn't PPE," the premier added.

"They have been given PPE and have it on. What they are doing is not wanting to be identified."

Almost 24,000 people were tested for the virus on Monday. There are 25 active cases in the state.