Melbourne has entered lockdown number five after Victoria recorded six new cases.
Premier Daniel Andrews said they had “no choice” but to go into the five-day lockdown.
“We have to do this, otherwise it will get away from us,” he said.
“We don’t want this getting away from us and being locked down for months.”
The same rules that applied during last month’s lockdown are back, including a five-kilometre travel limit for exercise and shopping and compulsory masks indoors and outdoors.
But Andrews warned the lockdown may go beyond next Tuesday depending on the conditions.
The news was greeted by immediate protests, with hundreds of protestors gathering in the CBD last night.
The latest lockdown is yet another devastating blow to Victoria’s events sector which is still reeling from the previous four. It is estimated the latest lockdown could cost the Victorian economy almost $1 billion in total.
However, Prime Minister Scott Morrison has done a deal with Andrews, which will see financial support provided to Victorian workers in “hotsopts” similar to the support granted in NSW.
Morrison has also suggested that all states and territories will be able to access “more simple and streamlined” federal government support in the event of a lockdown of 14 days or more.