South Australia to go into statewide lockdown

LOCKDOWN: Premier Steven Marshall has announced a seven-day lockdown for South Australia from 6pm on Tuesday.

LOCKDOWN: Premier Steven Marshall has announced a seven-day lockdown for South Australia from 6pm on Tuesday.

South Australia will move into a seven-day lockdown later today after more cases of COVID-19 were announced following the outbreak from Modbury Hospital.

An 81-year-old man, who had quarantined in New South Wales after returning from Argentina, had presented at the hospital on the weekend with some respiratory symptoms.

Further cases included the man's daughter, while a fourth and fifth case were announced on Tuesday morning.

The fourth case was a man in his 60s and one of the 16 close contacts announced yesterday, and had been in quarantine, while the fifth was a diner at the Greek on Halifax restaurant in Adelaide on Saturday - one of the exposure sites - who had been contacted and put into quarantine, and had now returned a positive test.

Premier Steven Marshall said the COVID cases were of the Delta variant.

South Australia will move to Level 5 restrictions and go into a seven-day lockdown from 6pm tonight, with only five reasons to leave the home.

Those reasons are:

  • Care and compassion (for example, caring for a loved one)
  • Essential work
  • The purchase of essential goods such as groceries
  • Medical reasons, including vaccinations
  • Exercise (only people in the same household, within 2.5 kilometres of your home, up to 90 minutes once a day)

Schools will be closed as of Wednesday, with home schooling to commence on Thursday.

Some childcare services and schools will be available for essential services workers only.

Mr Marshall said the state government wanted to move as quickly as possible to slow the spread of the cluster.

"We hate to put restrictions in place, but we believe we have one chance to get this right," Mr Marshall said.

"This is a dangerous time.

"We know this will have a heavy toll on businesses."

Chief Public Health Officer Professor Nicola Spurrier said this was the time to stay put and stay home.

She said people who were in quarantine were not able to leave the home for any of the five reasons to head out, rather they could only go out for medical assistance, to get a COVID test, or if they have their vaccine appointment booked. They must let staff know they are in quarantine.

Mr Marshall said the decision was made to enforce the lockdown across the state after what had been seen in Victoria with the rapid spread of the Delta variant out of Greater Melbourne, and with a case in Mildura providing "concerns for us on the other side of the border in the Riverland".

"This is a fast-moving disease [and] the current variant is worrying," he said.

"We have to take every precaution to protect our state."

The state government has announced that domestic violence victims and rough sleepers will have access to short-term motel accommodation for the duration of the lockdown.

Human Services Minister Michelle Lensink urged South Australians to seek accommodation and domestic violence support if they needed it.

"Even though we're asking South Australians to stay at home over the next seven days, South Australians should know that if they are experiencing violence or abuse at home, they can leave, if they believe it is safe to do so," she said.

This story South Australia to go into statewide lockdown first appeared on Port Lincoln Times.