Home / World News / WA COVID replace: Premier Mark McGowan finally reveals new State border reopening date

WA COVID replace: Premier Mark McGowan finally reveals new State border reopening date

WA’s hard border will be dismantled on March 3 — just short of four weeks after the original date set for the resumption of quarantine-free travel.

Premier Mark McGowan announced the new date at a press conference on Friday afternoon shortly after WA Health reported 194 new local cases in the latest reporting period.

Mr McGowan said the new date was “locked in and I can’t foresee a situation where it would change”.

“It is only 12 days away, so it is a lot closer than last time,” he said.

The Premier – who must travel to Sydney to testify in a defamation lawsuit launched by Queensland billionaire Clive Palmer from February 26 to 28 – said he would spend a full seven days in quarantine upon his return, despite that no longer being a requirement from March 3.

All international and interstate arrivals will be given a rapid antigen test at Perth Airport and required to report a positive result to WA Health.

The number of unvaccinated Australians returning to WA will be capped at 70 per week, and they will be required to spend a week in hotel quarantine at their own expense.

Mr McGowan said he expected the overall third dose vaccination rate would be 70 per cent by March 3, with the first dose vaccination rate among children 5-11 at 65 per cent by that point.

“The introduction of quarantine free travel will naturally mean there will be spread of the virus in WA,” he said.

“At the same time it is evident that our daily cases numbers are accelerating.”

To curb the growth of the gathering Omicron wave, Mr McGowan also announced a raft of new restrictions that will come into effect at 6am on Monday, February 21.

Mask-wearing will become compulsory in indoor public venues across the entire State.

Other new “Level 1 measures” will initially apply in Perth and Peel, the South West, Wheatbelt and Pilbara — but will be extended to other regions as they experience community transmission.

WA Premier Mark McGowan gives a COVID update press conference.
Camera IconWA Premier Mark McGowan at the press conference on Friday. Credit: Danella Bevis/The West Australian

The 2qm rule will return for all hospitality and entertainment venues, cultural venues, fitness centres, hairdressers, beauty service providers and places of worship.

In addition to the 2sqm rule, nightclubs will also be capped at a maximum of 500 patrons.

Seated service requirements will come into effect on the Crown gaming floor — but nowhere else.

“It’s important to note that standing consumption is still allowed and dancing is still allowed. We are trying to strike a safe balance,” Mr McGowan said.

He said experience from South Australia showed that introducing restrictions prior to reaching very high case numbers meant “you have a better outcome”.

About brandsauthority

Check Also

Vandals strike at quiet walkway in South Bunbury

South Bunbury residents have been left angered by a callous act of vandalism along what …

%d bloggers like this: