After nearly 10 months of being COVID free, parts of Western Australia have plunged into a strict lockdown after a hotel security guard tested positive to the virus.
On Sunday afternoon, the state’s premier Mark McGowan made the shock announcement that Perth, the Peel region and South West regions will be forced into a strict lockdown from 6pm for five days, with residents allowed to leave their homes for four reasons only.
Mr McGowan said the male guard aged in his 20s had been working at Four Points by Sheraton in the CBD where there were four active cases, including two of the UK variant and one of the South African mutant strain.
The guard from Maylands had tested negative on January 15, 17 and 23 but developed symptoms on Thursday, January 28.
RELATED: Perth plunged into five-day lockdown
Mr McGowan said it was suspected the man had the highly contagious UK variant as he had worked on the same floor as a case of that strain. The diagnosis has prompted other state leaders to quickly react.
Within hours of the lockdown announcement, Queensland has become the first state to declare large parts of Western Australia a coronavirus hotspot.
In a statement issued on Sunday afternoon, Queensland Health said that anyone who has been in Metropolitan Perth, Peel or the South West regions of WA who arrive in Queensland from 6pm tonight will face 14 days of hotel quarantine.
“Anyone who is already in Queensland but has been in Perth or the Peel or South West regions since January 26 should come forward and get tested and isolate until getting a negative result,” the statement said.
Queensland Health said while the hotel quarantine order is now in place, the time frame may change as they receive further advice from Western Australia.
The Northern Territory were also quick to react by declaring Perth and surrounding regions as COVID-19 hot spots.
All travellers entering the Territory from 7.30pm ACST on Monday will be required to go into mandatory quarantine in either Darwin or Alice Springs at a cost of $2500 per person.
According to NT News, anyone who has arrived from Perth, the Peel and South West regions since January 25 must get a COVID-19 test and immediately self-isolate.
ACT Health is requesting that passengers arriving on flights from Western Australia go directly to their accommodation and to minimise their interactions with other people.
“ACT Health advises that all passengers should wear a mask and go directly to their accommodation,” ACT’s Deputy Chief Health Officer, Dr Vanessa Johnston said.
“ACT Health is monitoring the situation in Western Australia and will be making further decisions as additional information is received from WA authorities. We will be in contact with passengers tomorrow.
“Of course, any person who starts to experience symptoms of COVID-19 should get tested immediately.”
Neighbouring state South Australia is yet to make a decision on their border with WA, with authorities reportedly monitoring the situation before making an announcement.
Here are the restrictions that will be in place for the next five days.
Stay at home: People in the Perth metropolitan area, the Peel region and the South-West region are required to stay home.
They are only allowed to leave their homes for four reasons:
• Shopping for essentials like groceries
• Medical or healthcare needs (including looking after the vulnerable)
• Exercise (only for one hour within their neighbourhood with one other person)
• Work (if you cannot work from home)