The further relaxation of coronavirus restrictions in Western Australia has been delayed again due to the outbreak in Victoria.
- Phase five of WA’s eased restrictions was due to begin on August 15
- That has been delayed to at least August 29 subject to review
- WA Premier Mark McGowan said the nation remained on “high alert”
Phase 5 had been due to begin on August 15 and would have seen remaining restrictions removed, except WA’s hard border and access to remote Aboriginal communities.
It would also see the removal of WA’s two-square-metre rule and the 50 per cent capacity for major venues.
Today WA Premier Mark McGowan announced phase 5 had been delayed until at least August 29.
“I know this may cause some frustrations to members of the community and business community, but we need to be extra-cautious now,” Mr McGowan said.
“We need to remain on high alert given what is happening across the country, we all know just how quickly things can change.
“We cannot afford to let our guard down.”
WA had no new cases of COVID-19 overnight, with six active cases all in hotel quarantine.
Mr McGowan said the State Government would review the August 29 date and make an announcement one week before whether to ease restrictions from that date.
Truck drivers face mandatory tests
He also announced a new regime for testing interstate truck drivers.
“These arrangements mean that any truck driver entering WA will have to show evidence of having received a negative COVID-19 test result in the last seven days,” he said.
“If they have not been tested in the last seven days they will be directed at the border to have a test within 48 hours.
“These arrangements will come into place next week.”
Truck drivers were already required to wear masks when they got out of their vehicles in WA but will now also need to be tested every seven days.
Mr McGowan said he knew it would not be pleasant for drivers but it was necessary to protect people from the virus.
“I feel for the truckies, they probably do not want to go through the tests,” he said.
“They have not done anything wrong, they are just doing their job, but we are just trying to protect people.”
Mr McGowan also encouraged people from the city to consider seeking employment in WA’s regional areas.
“There are jobs in agriculture, tourism and mining,” he said.
“It is time to look further afield for work and potentially move to the country.”
More to come.
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