South Australia to be released from hard lockdown 3 days early
Sydney, Australia, Nov 20 (efe-epa).- The government of the state of South Australia announced Friday that it will end its hard lockdown three days early, after bringing under control the COVID-19 outbreak detected last weekend in the city of Adelaide.
South Australian Police Commissioner Grant Stevens told a news conference in Adelaide that “as of midnight Saturday, we will be reverting to a series of restrictions which are very similar to the ones that were imposed at the beginning of this week.”
Therefore, Saturday will end the hard lockdown enforced on its more than 1.7 million inhabitants on Wednesday night. The confinement is considered the most severe imposed in Australia so far, since it prevented the state’s residents from even exercising outdoors and taking their children and pets for a walk.
The population of South Australia, which has recorded 553 cases and four deaths from the novel coronavirus since the beginning of the pandemic, will be able to reopen their businesses, although with capacity limitations, as well as attend funerals, and celebrate weddings and religious events, among other activities.
The six-day lockdown had been imposed due to contact tracing information, but authorities had since discovered that one of the infected people had misled tracing teams.
The state’s premier Steven Marshall said that “we know now that they lied. To say I am fuming about the actions of this individual is an absolute understatement.”
“This selfish actions of this individual have put our whole state in a very difficult situation. His actions have affected businesses, individuals, family groups and is completely and utterly unacceptable,” Marshall added.
The authorities of South Australia, the economy of which represents about 6 percent of the GDP of the country, reported Friday three new local infections, all of them already in quarantine, bringing this new outbreak to 25 infections.
With more than 25 million inhabitants, Australia has recorded around 27,790 cases of COVID-19 and 907 deaths, of which 20,345 infections and 819 deaths correspond to the state of Victoria, the epicenter of the second wave of the pandemic.
Victoria, where the alleged failures in the quarantine centers of the city of Melbourne skyrocketed the numbers of infections at the end of June, has gone 20 consecutive days without any infection after applying a strict lockdown of more than 110 days. EFE-EPA