Coronavirus Australia live news: Restrictions ease in Victoria with hairdressers, golf and tennis now open - ABC News  10/18/2020 20:51:27 

By Nicholas McElroy


Regional Victoria is doing verywell, the ship at an outbreak seemsto have not spread as much as wefeared it might have, at what pointdo you call up the New South WalesPremier and make a case for her toopen her border to regionalVictoria?

Mr Andrews:

I think they are actively considering that. I think they lookat what is occurring in regionalVictoria and they see those very lownumbers. This will be one of thosechallenging issues. I think theywill be more likely to let regionalVictoria into New South Wales andinto South Australia while there isthat border between Melbourne andregional Victoria.

We don't want that to be on for any longer than itneeds to be, but we do have stilltwo different stories, there is muchless virus and regional Victoriathan Metro Melbourne, even thoughthe Metro Melbourne numbers aregetting close to regional Victorialevels, so getting the sequence ofthis right isn't easy, but I wouldnot be surprised if, quite soon, the New South Wales government and theSouth Australian government feltthat they were in a position to beable to allow regional Victorians totravel more freely into their state.

By Nicholas McElroy


About the 25 K limit. There are some people that are still upset with that, you are able to break it down, is that literally that you don't want people crossing the city?


"It's a couple ofthings. It's about some parts of Melbourne that have got more virus than others, and 25km means you got less movement between those.

"It's also about, as I've said yesterday, there are some places of absolute, they are very popular because of their natural beauty and think that they offer, whether it is Mornington Peninsula or the Dandenong ranges, we can't have a situation whereeverybody is up at the thousand steps and we've literally got people that are forming a crowd, the size of which would never be allowed at this point.

"Thought nothing more or less than that. Now, once we get to a point where the reasons to leave home, there are no more reasons, you can move much more freely and leave your home much more freely, thenthat 25kmlimit will almost certainly come off.

"It is not there for ever. It is just about easing out of the five and before we get all the commentary about, well, there's scientific basis for this, that and the other, they are judgements. It's a package. It is not any one thing, it is a series ofthings, and that is the way it was put together, it's off the back of health advice, it's appropriate at this time, but it won't be there forever and it won't be there any longer it needs to be.

By Nicholas McElroy


"What isyour message to Josh Frydenberg whocontinues to be frustrated with yourroadmap?"


"It's all about the politicswith this bloke, isn't it? That'sall he does. That all he does, he isnot a leader, he is just a liberal.

"All he does is play politics,every day, and I just don't think that is fair alright and I thinkVictorians are sick of it.Victorians want their familyprotected, they wanted their healthissue dealt with so we can open up.

"He is not a leader, he is just aliberalbecause all he does isplay politics in the midst of aglobal pandemic."

By Nicholas McElroy

NSW Health authorities have confirmed four new coronavirus infections in the 24 hours to 8pm last night.

All of the cases arereturned travellers in hotel quarantine.

By Nicholas McElroy

"Whilst we announced some changes to the roadmap for regional Victoria yesterday, those that relate to indoor restaurants and cafes will not apply to the greater Shepparton area at this time," Mr Andrews said.

"That allows us to get the day 11 testing completed and to have a much more accurate picture of exactly how much virus is in the Shepparton community.

"These matters will be reviewed on the weekends and it would be my hope and my expectation that we can have Shepparton assume those new settings, those indoor settings with the rest of regional Victoria, that is the 40 patrons inside rather than 20, as soon as possible, and hopefully this coming weekend."

"The changes, as they relate to outdoors going to 70, they will be able to take that step."

"Despite the enormous amount of testing that has gone on in Shepparton, we have only got those three cases and that is a very reassuring thing but it is appropriate that we just wait a few more days, get the day 11 tests."

"We hope we will be able to get to a situation where, at 11:59pm on Sunday the 25th, Shepparton will be able to take that step."

By Nicholas McElroy

  • 136 active cases
  • 4 new cases. All under investigation
  • 1 death, male in 90s connected to aged care
  • 12 in hospital. 0 ICU
  • 2,955,149 tests total in 2020
  • 10,793 results since yesterday
  • 104,355 tests from 13th  19th October.
  • More than 6,000 in Shepparton
  • 11 healthcare workers active cases
  • Metro rolling average: 7.2 Regional is 0.5
  • Mystery cases 14 days to 16th October is 15, all metro
  • All 4 of todays cases in metro
  • 3 Hume
  • 1 Moonee Valley
  • 7 Active cases in regional Victoria (4 Mitchell Shire, 3 Shepparton) unchanged from previous days

By Nicole Mills

By Nicholas McElroy

Key Event

Some COVID-19 restrictions in New South Wales are due to be eased from this Friday with the limit on outdoor public gatherings raised from 20 people to 30.

Restaurants and other venues will also be allowed to take bookings for up to 30 people per table, up from 10.

It comes in addition to the easing last Friday on restrictions for corporate functions at appropriate venues and restaurants, with up to 300 people now permitted.

From December 1 the limits on weddings will also be relaxed to allow 300 guests, subject to distancing requirements.

By Nicholas McElroy

Key Event

Premier Daniel Andrews addressed the travellers from the New Zealand travel bubble.

"Now, just in relation to NewZealand travellers, I can confirm that there are 65 people that have travelled from New Zealand and ultimately arrived in Victoria. 55 of those have been door knocked and we have just taken them through all the different rules that are in place just to update them, make sure that they know what is going on," Mr Andrews said.

"About 55 of those we have been ableto find and speak to, so there is still 10, that may not be 10 addresses, it may be less than that, but 55 of those people have been door knocked.

"There's still a few more to do today which we will do. There are 17 flights into Melbourne today that could possibly have New Zealand passengers that have arrived via Sydney. We, you know, we are notparticularly pleased that we were asked the question, do you want to be in a bubble, and it turns out that even though we said no, we are, but that is the fact of the matter, that is what we faced.

"I'm not going to be quarantining people that came from a low virus community, and we just have to make the best of this."

By Nicholas McElroy

By Nicholas McElroy

"Sad to report that there has been a further death, one male in his 90s, and that death is connected to an outbreak in aged care," Mr Andrewssaid.

"We of course send our best wishes, condolences and sympathies to that family.

"There are 12Victorians in hospital and none of those 12 are receiving intensive care.

"A total of 2,955,149 West results have been received since the beginning of the year.

"That is an increase of 10,793 results since yesterday."

By Nicholas McElroy

Is there any confirmation if golf is played with 2 or 4 people

-Happy Golfer

Hi, Happy (thank you for giving me the opening to post theGIF below).

This was answered earlier but we're starting to get a couple of golf questions.

This is what the DHHS has to say about outdoor exercise:

  • You can exercise in a group of up to ten people from a maximum of two households outdoors in a public place (personal training is limited to two people plus the trainer). This replaces the limit of five people from a maximum of two households.

Hope this helps.

By Nicholas McElroy

The Victorian Tourism Industry Council says the sector could lose up to $23 billionin visitor spending, if authorities don't map out a clear path out of lockdown.

Council chief, Felicia Mariani, says tourism is hemorrhaging money, and 165,000jobs could go if things don't change.

"If we don't commence our journey of the first step until the end of November or early December we're going to be looking at April or May before we're to the point of everyone else in the country is right now, and that will put Victoria six months behind the rest of Australia," she said.

By Nicholas McElroy

is the tasmania premier still due to announce whether borders will open to nsw today?


Hi hopeful, yes he is.

Here's the story:

The Tasmanian Government will today announce whether travellers from New South Wales will join those from other jurisdictions to be permitted unrestricted access into the state.

From next Monday, residents from non-COVID-19 hotspots can enter Tasmania without having to undergo two weeks of quarantine.

These states include Queensland, South Australia, Western Australia, the Northern Territory and the ACT.

Premier Peter Gutwein has previously said the border with Victoria will remain closed until at least the start of December, today he'll announce whether it'll open to New South Wales.

By Nicholas McElroy

Key Event

Premier Daniel Andrews will hold his daily press conference at 11:00am AEDT

By Nicholas McElroy


Since the early days of the coronavirus pandemic the hopes of many have been pinned on a potential vaccine, but what happens if parents disagree over giving their child the COVID-19 vaccination?

ByRhiannon Shine

By Nicholas McElroy

My barbers aren't picking up their phone this morning - what's happening??

-Panic mode

At least that's according to Shaggy and Cousin It:

Massive lines to get into the hairdressers today in Ringwood. But everyone in good spirits and just excited to embrace the easing of restrictions.


Cousin It

-The line at the barbers this morning was as long as my hair!

By Nicholas McElroy

What time will they be telling us what time Dan will be speaking?


By Nicholas McElroy

The new cases bring the rolling 14-day average for Melbourne down to 7.2, while in regional Victoria it remains at 0.5.

Speaking before the release of today's figures, epidemiologist James McCaw from the University of Melbourne warned that Victoria was not out of the woods yet.

"We are still, by and large, fully susceptible to this virus," Professor McCaw said.

"A vaccine is a long way away, so even with the most compliant population that is doing everything it should, there is still a risk that we will get an outbreak."

"We have to prepare to be in this for the long haul and we certainly need to live with the virus - no-one can be locked down for years."

By Nicholas McElroy

Could we have a break down of the 4 cases today please?


Hey Legend.

These details will come in due time. They are likely to come up at the Premier's press conference or be inthe Chief Health Officer's daily breakdown, both of which are due later today.

(And no, we don't have a time for Premier Daniel Andrew's press conference just yet either)

By Nicholas McElroy

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