South Australia will extend its hard border to cover the whole state of Victoria from midnight, after the Victorian Government announced a statewide lockdown.

Key points:

  • South Australia will impose a hard border on the whole of Victoria from midnight tonight
  • Arrivals from Melbourne’s Tullamarine Airport since February 9 will be required to quarantine
  • Testing requirements for Greater Sydney and Greater Perth will be lifted a day early

SA health authorities imposed a hard border with Greater Melbourne on Wednesday but travel between SA and regional Victoria had still been allowed.

But Victoria’s Holiday Inn outbreak, and its decision to enter a “circuit-breaker” lockdown for five days, have prompted SA authorities to impose tougher restrictions.

“We [will] extend our border restrictions which were previously in place for just the Greater Melbourne area to all of Victoria,” SA Premier Steven Marshall said today.

“From today, the 12th of February, transit through [Melbourne’s] Tullamarine Airport to South Australia will no longer be permitted without 14 days of quarantine.”

People already in SA who have been in the airport’s Terminal 4 since February 9 must quarantine for a fortnight, and their family members and close contacts must quarantine until they return their first negative test.

Anyone who has been at Tullamarine Airport from February 7 “needs to test and isolate until they get a negative result”, Mr Marshall said.

Their family and household contacts must also get tested and isolate until the first negative test.

People transiting through Tullamarine Airport into Adelaide will have to quarantine for 14 days.(ABC News: Robyn Powell)

South Australia’s Chief Public Health Officer Nicola Spurrier said it was estimated about 500 people have come into the state after passing through Terminal 4 since February 9.

She said she was most concerned about the potential exposure from a worker who was infectious at the Brunetti cafe inside Terminal 4.

“They had a very long shift there — an eight-and-a-half hour shift while infectious,” Professor Spurrier said.

“Fortunately we have national guidelines and mandatory requirements for masks in airports, but obviously if you are going to get a coffee, you are going to be drinking a coffee and you’ll have your mask off.

“Previously when we’ve had lockdowns with Victoria, we have not allowed transit through the airport and that was particularly important.”

Uncertainty for major events

Professor Spurrier said her team was in the process of contacting people considered to be at the greatest risk.

“The Terminal 4 Jetstar and Rex flights are at higher risk, so those are the ones we are focusing on getting a phone call through and an SMS through to,” she said.

Nicola Spurrier says the implications for upcoming arts and tennis events are still being worked out.(ABC News: Michael Clements)

In announcing his state’s lockdown, Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews said the UK strain of the virus was moving at a velocity that has not been seen anywhere in Australia over the last 12 months.

Professor Spurrier said Mr Andrews used “appropriately strong language”, given the possibility of “superspreading”.

“By the time they are diagnosing the close contacts and then the secondary contacts, the secondary contacts are already positive.”

Adelaide is set to host several major arts events in the coming weeks, as well as the Adelaide International women’s tennis event.

Professor Spurrier said the implications of the new restrictions for those events was still being worked out.

“We want to make sure that we maintain events as much as we possibly can but we need to weigh that up,” she said.

While new restrictions were imposed on Victoria, the Premier said SA will remove testing requirements for people travelling from Greater Sydney or Greater Perth a day early.

That restriction will be removed from midnight tonight.

“We know [restrictions] are hugely inconvenient but by working together we can keep our state safe … and that’s going to be particularly important as we lead up to the Adelaide Fringe [and] Adelaide Festival,” Mr Marshall said.