Australia More freedoms coming soon for Melburnians
Victoria's outbreak climbs with 1,571 cases and 13 deaths
Victoria has seen a slight rise in its Covid cases, giving hope to residents figures may have peaked. The state recorded 1,571 cases and 13 deaths on Wednesday, making it Victoria's deadliest day during the Delta outbreak. The figure was slightly up from the 1,466 infections recorded on Tuesday.The number of Victorians in hospital with COVID-19 continues to rise. Some 675 people are currently in care, with 144 in intensive care units and 100 on ventilators. Despite the high figure, residents have been given hope they may be released from their dreaded lockdown earlier than expected.
More eased restrictions are on the way for Melburnians, who've celebrated their first day out of lockdown.
As the city emerged from its sixth lockdown on Friday, Premier Daniel Andrews confirmed the state was on track to reach 80 per cent full vaccination by next weekend, paving the way for further restrictions to ease.
He said he would hold a press conference "quite soon to clarify what we hope can happen at the end of next week".
"We will deliver faithfully each and every item contained within the Victorian roadmap to deliver the national plan and if we can go further, then, of course, we will make announcements to that effect," Mr Andrews said.
Cases tipped to lift as border rule shake-up exposes contradictions
Interstate travellers will be able to visit Victoria without quarantining for 14 days before Melburnians can go to Ballarat under what Victoria's Health Minister has dubbed a transitional anomaly.The border changes come as an influential scientific modeller said he believes Victoria's COVID-19 case numbers will continue to rise for weeks instead of peaking ahead of an anticipated easing of restrictions next week.
According to the government's roadmap out of lockdown, outdoor masks will be scrapped, statewide travel will return, indoor entertainment venues such as cinemas and theatres, gyms and retail can reopen and capacity limits can increase when the state reaches 80 per cent.
The state was initially forecast to reach the milestone on November 5.
Melburnians flocked to cafes, restaurants and pubs, waited in hours-long queues to get haircuts and reunited with friends and family on Friday to mark lockdown lifting.
But Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton has warned daily COVID-19 cases are expected to reach record highs as Melbourne reopens.
"As we start to reopen, there will be more COVID in the community, really than at any other point in time, many of those people will have mild illness because they're fully vaccinated," he said, urging Victorians to follow check-in and mask rules.
Victoria recorded 2189 new COVID-19 cases and 16 deaths on Friday, the highest daily tally of the state's third wave.
The state has also announced it will scrap quarantine for fully vaccinated travellers arriving from overseas, bringing the state into line with NSW.
From November 1 international travellers will no longer need to quarantine either at home or in hotels if they are fully vaccinated and test negative to COVID-19 72 hours before their flight and then 24 hours after arrival.
There will also no longer be a cap on fully vaccinated returning Australians wishing to enter Victoria.
What Melburnians can do on this Melbourne Cup weekend .
Restrictions will further ease in Victoria just in time for the Melbourne Cup weekend, with a raft of changes set to come into effect at 6pm on Friday.Due to no crowds being permitted at last year's races and tough restrictions, the city and the regions are set to be buzzing with excited racegoers and holidaymakers this year.