Western Australia has recorded one new local case of COVID-19 on the first day of a snap lockdown in metropolitan Perth and the Peel region.
The case was confirmed by WA Health as a person who visited a restaurant also visited by the positive Victorian case who spent five days attending several venues around Perth.
Earlier, Premier Mark McGowan set his targets on the Federal Government, saying calls for help with the hotel quarantine system have been ignored.
Mr McGowan warned the current hotel quarantine system was not sustainable in its current form.
“I’m getting to the end of my tether with the Commonwealth handing responsibility to the states and not helping,” Mr McGowan said.
“We cannot continue down this path for another year or beyond.
“Hotel quarantine is an imperfect system but largely it has worked well with around 45,000 returning Australians being processed through the West Australian system.
“I have been calling for the Commonwealth’s assistance with quarantine for many months now. CBD hotels are not fit-for-purpose quarantine facilities, and quarantine is the responsibility of the Commonwealth government under the Constitution.
“There are a number of Commonwealth facilities that would be more suitable for quarantine purposes.
“The pandemic will be here for at least the rest of this year. It is time for the Commonwealth to step up and help.”
Western Australia recorded no new local cases of COVID-19 on the first day of the lockdown.
The infection of the man’s close contact, a woman in her 40s, was widely reported yesterday.
Mr McGowan said the news today was a positive start and there had been “extensive testing of the close contacts of the two positive local cases”.
“In total, to date, we have identified 337 contacts, including 71 close contacts. They have all been tested or will be today. They will remain in quarantine. So far 27 close contacts have tested negative.
Perth and Peel’s three-day lockdown began after midnight and was triggered by an outbreak at quarantine hotel Mercure Perth.
The 54-year-old Victorian man is believed to have been infected at the Mercure Hotel and spent five days out and about in Perth while infectious.
WA’s acting Chief Health Officer, Dr Paul Armstrong, said yesterday it was likely the man was infected while staying at Mercure Perth, before being released on April 17 and flying to Melbourne on April 21.
He was in an adjacent room on the same floor where it was revealed earlier in the week that the coronavirus had spread between guests in two separate rooms.
Mr McGowan said there were 24 guests on the affected floor at the Mercure Hotel during the outbreak.
“Five guests have left Australia. The remaining 19 have tested and 18 have tested negative. The one positive is the Victorian man,” he said.
“In addition, various hotel quarantine staff worked on the floor during the same period. 57 have returned a negative result. Two results are pending. These are encouraging signs, but we’re not out of the woods just yet, particularly with number of contacts that we are awaiting test results for.”