Victoria’s plans to lift lockdown going ahead despite four new cases.

Victoria’s plans to lift lockdown going ahead despite four new cases.

Acting Premier James Merlino has this morning confirmed the eased restrictions outlined yesterday will go ahead with strict mask rules in place, despite the emergence of four new local cases with no identifiable source.

Acting Premier said the state will continue to take “cautious next steps” from 11:59pm tonight (Thursday 10th) , by easing restrictions, adding that the state is “moving ahead but we are on high alert”.

 “We’ve always said that, when we could ease restrictions, based on that advice, we would,” he said.

“We also said yesterday – and we’ve been saying every single day – this is not over yet and the risks of this virus will be a factor in our lives in the long term and in the short term so in the short, that means we are moving ahead but we are on high alert and the public health advice is very, very clear.”

Victorian health authorities are still investigating the source of infection for the four local COVID-19 cases recorded on Wednesday. Today authorities said the health advice tells them they can go ahead with the easing of restrictions, but with the added outdoor mask rules in place. There are now 78 active cases and 180 exposure sites across the state.

Deputy Chief Health Officer Professor Allen Cheng said it was not yet clear which variant the four people had and there were no theories yet on how they could have become infected, but noted their relative proximity to the City of Whittlesea outbreak nearby.

Professor Cheng said two other cases detected interstate, a man and a woman who travelled to New South Wales and Queensland while infectious, appeared to have left their Melbourne home early on June 1 to travel north.

"While we can't pinpoint the source of these infections, we're aware that one of these cases had checked in near the Craigieburn Central shopping centre on the 23rd of May," he said.

Professor Cheng said authorities were continuing their investigation into how the Delta strain jumped from a returned traveller from Sri Lanka into the community to start the West Melbourne outbreak.

No link has been found yet, but he indicated authorities had largely ruled out the theory that the traveller was infectious after his stay in hotel quarantine, based on serology testing and negative results from close contacts.

Folowing are the new Covid rules for Metropolitan Melbourne consists of the following Local Government Areas (LGAs):

Banyule, Bayside, Boroondara, Brimbank, Cardinia, Casey, Darebin, Frankston, Glen Eira, Greater Dandenong, Hobsons Bay, Hume, Kingston, Knox, Manningham, Maribyrnong, Maroondah, Melbourne, Melton, Monash, Moonee Valley, Moreland, Mornington Peninsula, Nillumbik, Port Phillip, Stonnington, Whitehorse, Whittlesea, Wyndham (except Little River), Yarra, Yarra Ranges.

From 11:59pm Thursday 10 June, metropolitan Melbourne and regional Victoria will see changes to restrictions.