South Australia has eased its hard border closure with Western Australia but will keep COVID-19 restrictions in place for people coming from areas undergoing a five-day lockdown.
Anyone travelling from regional WA will now be allowed to enter SA, and those who arrived since Australia Day will be allowed to leave quarantine.
However, they will all need to get tested three times for the virus, on days one, five and 12, and must isolate until they get their first negative result.
They will also be allowed to transition through Perth Airport but must not have visited the WA lockdown areas – Perth, the Peel region and the South West – since January 26.
Anyone seeking to travel from WA’s lockdown zones will not be allowed into SA unless they are a returning resident or have secured an exemption.
They will still need to quarantine at home for 14 days and be subject to testing.
SA’s hard border closure with WA was imposed late on Sunday night after details of a positive case involving a security guard in Perth first emerged.
Police Commissioner Grant Stevens said SA decided to go hard early because of a lack of detailed information about the situation coming from WA.
He said the changes on Tuesday related to the flow of more information.
“It’s about the information we’re being provided and what we have access to from Western Australia,” he said.
“Monitoring their activity, the level of testing they’re undertaking, how they’re managing the contact tracing.
“At this stage, we’re comfortable that we can constrict our level of restrictions to the Greater Perth area.”
Despite the Perth virus case being linked to a security guard at a quarantine hotel, SA Premier Steven Marshall again rejected calls for guards in similar Adelaide hotels to be prevented from holding down second jobs, to help limit the spread of any infection.
He said imposing such a rule would not only make it harder to attract staff but would simply be replacing one risk for another.
“Unless we take the workers in these hotels and prevent them from interacting with anybody from outside of work, then there is always going to be a risk,” he said.
“If they were not working but going down to the local football club, going to a shopping centre, going to a cinema – you’re just replacing one risk for the other.”
However, Mr Marshall said work to extend daily saliva testing to all hotel staff would be complete by next week.
The regime began last month with nurses and other people “on the front line”.
“We’re working through it, making sure we do it in a considered way,” the premier said.
He said the daily tests would then be further expanded to other people who come in contact with returning travellers including SA Health staff at Adelaide Airport.
On Tuesday, SA’s transition committee also resolved to remove all measures for people travelling from Greater Sydney from later this month.
Those arrivals do not need to quarantine but are currently required to be tested three times for the virus.
That requirement will be dropped from February 13.
SA reported one new virus case on Tuesday, in a man who recently returned from overseas, but checks were being made to determine if his was an old infection.