THE South Australian Government has reintroduced restrictions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic as they remain on high alert to the potential for an outbreak in the state.
Home gatherings will now be restricted to a maximum of 10 people in South Australia while patrons at licensed premises will only be able to consume alcohol whilst seated.
Testing capabilities at the Mount Gambier Hospital have also doubled in response to long queues, which left cross-border community members waiting several hours to get tested last week.
A second lane has been formed at the current testing station and Mount Gambier City Council are working alongside the hospital to identify a location for a second site.
It comes as two further positive cases were recorded in South Australia yesterday, taking the total number of active cases in the state to eight.
The cases relate to two men in their 50s – one who arrived on a repatriation flight from India last week while the other is linked to the woman in her 20s who was announced as a positive case on Sunday.
South Australia chief medical officer Professor Nicola Spurrier said SA Health are now monitoring 95 close contacts from the nine cases recorded in the last 10 days.
“I think this is really concerning because we have now seen transmission within our state to close contacts of cases,” Ms Spurrier said.
“It is extremely transmissible this virus and that’s why it’s so important for people when we interview them they give us as much information as they can about their whereabouts.”
With 6489 active cases now present in Victoria, Mount Gambier Mayor Lynette Martin expressed her ongoing concern about the delicate situation we find ourselves in as a cross-border community.
“My level of concern for the safety, health and well-being of our community has heightened again in view of the number of positive cases in Victoria,” Ms Martin said.
“The new restrictions may not be desirable, but hopefully taking these small measures will assist our effort in the long run so we do not see the virus spread here in South Australia.”
Ms Martin strongly condemned the actions of those Victorians trying to flout border controls following three arrests over the weekend.
“It is very disappointing to see the reckless and irresponsible manner of those people, which is putting the safety of Mount Gambier people at risk,” she said.
“They should feel the full weight of the law.”
Limestone Coast Police acting officer in charge Natasha Elliott said the four recent arrests for direction breaches were a reflection of the effectiveness of the hard border.
“It shows what we are doing is working and we are paying attention to the right areas,” she said.
“Majority are trying to do the right thing, but it is disappointing there are some people who still are not getting the message and are potentially jeopardising the safety of others.”
She praised the cross-border community for their compliance throughout the changing restrictions.
“We recognise these changes have had a larger impact on those community than anyone else and we are thankful for their support of what we are doing,” Ms Elliott said.