NSW removalists sent packing from Victoria

·2-min read

Sydney removalists accused of crossing the Victorian border without the correct paperwork have been sent packing in another coronavirus scare for the state's northwest.

Health Minister Martin Foley confirmed a group of removalists from Greater Sydney were caught illegally entering the state near Mildura on Tuesday.

"Victoria Police have taken appropriate action. People have been fined and charged, and sent back to NSW," he told reporters on Wednesday.

All commercial furniture removalists and delivery drivers in red zones were banned from entering Victoria for two weeks on July 16 after a three-person team from NSW seeded the state's Delta variant outbreak.

It has since spread to Mildura, with a local man in his 30s testing positive after attending the Geelong-Carlton game at the MCG on July 10.

He picked up the virus at the AFL game from an unknowingly COVID-infected resident at Maribyrnong's Ariele Apartments, where the removalists from NSW who later tested positive were working on July 8.

The removalists weren't wearing masks while on the job, in a breach of the conditions of their worker permits, and Victorian authorities struggled to track their movements.

"To the point where only in recent days did we come across the fact that Nhill Road House was visited by those original NSW removalists," Mr Foley said.

"I don't know what it is with NSW removalists. But let it be a lesson that if you break the rules, there are consequences."

The latest removalists incident came after a two-week pause on red zone permits for Victorian residents returning from NSW and the ACT came into effect at 11.59pm on Tuesday.

Only specified workers and those who apply for and receive an exemption are now able to travel between the two states, along with residents in the border bubble.

Fines of more than $5000 can be handed out to anybody caught entering Victoria from a red zone without a permit

Victoria Police have been contacted by AAP for comment.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting