Western Australia will move to a hard border closure at midnight on Sunday, with only a handful of people allowed in to keep the state running.
Premier Mark McGowan announced this afternoon that by 11:59pm Sunday, WA will effectively become an “island within an island”.
West Australians interested in coming home now have just two and a half days to do so. For eastern state residents thinking of visiting WA, Mr McGowan said they should “forget about it”.
Exemptions to the border closure include freight and logistics, emergency services, workers with specialist skills and healthcare workers.
Overnight WA diagnosed eight new cases of COVID-19. The total number of cases now stands at 400.
“The number of new cases continues to be very encouraging,” said Mr McGowan.
“The measures we’ve taken so far are having an impact. But we cannot take our foot off the pedal.
“Western Australia is in a unique position. Our isolation is our best defence.”
Mr McGowan also said a spike of positive coronavirus cases in the Kimberley region of Western Australia was of “grave concern”.
Yesterday six new cases of COVID-19 were identified, five of which were health care workers in the area.
Indigenous communities are at a heightened risk of COVID-19 due to the availability of healthcare in remote towns.
“The Kimberley is closed to tourists and visitors and additional restrictions apply to specific communities,” said Mr McGowan.
“However, further restrictions to stop the movement of people between towns or local government areas are now being introduced. We cannot take any chances here.
“We know just how vulnerable the Kimberley and Aboriginal people are to viruses like coronavirus.
“I hold very serious concerns about the situation in the Kimberley. We must act fast.”
Effective from midnight tonight, residents in the Kimberley region must stay within their local government area.
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