Travel Requirements and Border Rules Are Changing in Response to Perth's COVID-19 Lockdown
The city has gone into lockdown, so Australia's states have implemented new requirements regarding entry, testing and quarantine.
Whether you went for work, leisure or something in-between, if you've recently travelled to the Perth metropolitan area and Peel region in Western Australia, you were probably happy to venture further than your own city. But with the WA capital currently experiencing a three-day lockdown in response to a new COVID-19 case, state governments around the country are implementing new conditions on travel and crossing interstate borders.
The situation varies state by state; however, it's the type of thing that has been happening after new cases and subsequent lockdowns of late. It last occurred in March, when Brisbane went into its most recent set of stay-at-home conditions.
In New South Wales, a COVID-19 concerns notice has been issued by NSW Health, applying to the the Perth metropolitan area and Peel region from 12.01am today, Saturday, April 24. Anyone coming to NSW who has been in an affected area either on or after that time has to fill out a self-declaration form either before or upon entering the state.
If you have been in either region since Saturday, April 17 and you're now in NSW, you're asked to look at a list of exposure sites issued by the WA Government. If you visited them within the time frames identified, you'll beed to follow the actions outlined and also contact NSW Health immediately. It's a lengthy list, spanning shopping centres, restaurants and an aquatic centre, all between Saturday, April 17–Friday, April 23 so far.
In Victoria, a number of changes are now in effect. With WA's lockdown coming in response to a Victorian man who tested positive upon his return to Melbourne after spending 14 days in hotel quarantine in Perth, the Victorian Government has listed both Qantas flight QF778 from Perth to Melbourne on Wednesday, April 21 and Melbourne Airport's Terminal 1 between 7–7.30pm on Wednesday, April 21 as new exposure sights. Folks who were on the plane must get tested for COVID-19 immediately, then self-isolate for 14 days regardless of their initial test result, while anyone at the terminal during that timeframe must also get tested for COVID-19 immediately and self-isolate until a negative result is received.
Plus, anyone who has returned from WA recently is also asked to look at a list of exposure sites issued by the WA Government and, if you visited them within the time frames identified, to contact the Victorian Department of Health immediately. Melburnians can also keep an eye on the local list of exposure sites at the Victorian Government Department of Health website — as it may change if more sites are identified.
Regarding the Victorian border, the state has classified the Perth metropolitan area and Peel region in Western Australia as red zones under its traffic light border system, which means that non-Victorian residents can't enter the state without an exception, permit or exemption. Also, anyone currently in Victoria who has been in the metro Perth or Peel region between Saturday, April 17–Friday, April 23, other than to transit through either, is required to isolate, get tested within 72 hours and stay isolated until receiving a negative result.
For Queensland, anyone who has been in the Perth or Peel regions on or since Saturday, April 17 and entered the Sunshine State before 11.59pm on Friday, April 23 is required to get tested as soon as possible and self-isolate. They'll also be under the same lockdown conditions that are currently in place in Perth until 2am AEST on Tuesday, April 27.
Plus, those coming to Queensland after midnight last night who have been in the same parts of WA since Saturday, April 17 are only allowed to enter under an exemption, unless they're a Queensland resident. Either way, they now have to go into hotel quarantine for up to 14 days.
South Australia requires anyone who has been in the Perth or Peel regions on or since Saturday, April 17 to get tested and quarantine until getting a negative result. Only returning SA residents, genuine relocations and domestic violence victims are allowed to SA from the two areas from 12.01am Saturday, April 24, and must now get tested and go into self-quarantine.
In the Australian Capital Territory, non-ACT residents wishing to travel over from the Perth or Peel regions — who've been there since Saturday, April 17 — now need an approved exemption from ACT Health. You'll also have to quarantine until 2am AEST on Tuesday, April 27. For residents coming back from the two regions, you'll need to complete an online declaration form before leaving, and then to also stay home until the same time.
Tasmania won't allow entry from folks who've been to the Perth or Peel regions within 14 days of their arrival, except for people deemed essential travellers — and then you'll need to quarantine for 14 days. If you've been there, arrived in Tasmania since Saturday, April 17 and attended one of the exposure sites listed by the WA Government, you need to self-isolate and contact Tasmania's Public Health Hotline.
The Northern Territory now requires testing for anyone who has been to been to the Perth or Peel regions since Saturday, April 17, but only if they went to one of the exposure sites listed by the WA Government. You'll also need to quarantine until you get a negative result.
To find out more about the status of COVID-19 in Australia and how to protect yourself, head to the Australian Government Department of Health's website.
Published on April 24, 2021 by Sarah Ward