‘State of disaster’ as Melbourne goes into stage 4 lockdown

The Andrews Government has declared a state of disaster with Melbourne entering a stage 4 lockdown and regional Victoria moving to stage three restrictions from Thursday.

Under the stage four restrictions, Melbourne residents will only be allowed to shop and exercise within 5 kilometres of their homes while an evening curfew will be implemented across Melbourne from 8:00pm to 5:00am every day.

Regional Victoria will see restaurants, cafes and bars close from Thursday.

Premier Daniel Andrews said the move followed an “unacceptably high” number of community transmission cases.

“Those mysteries, that community transmission, is in many respects our biggest challenge and the reason why we need to move to a different set of rules,” he said.

Andrews said the current strategy would not see the state reach a point where it could reopen until the end of the year.

“Therefore we have to do more and we have to do more right now,” he said.

“That is not the position we wanted to be in but we cannot have a situation where this continues to grow and grow in regional Victoria.”

The new restrictions will last until at least September 13 for all of Victoria.