At a press conference this morning, Victorian premier Daniel Andrews announced that the border between Victoria and NSW will close from 11.59pm on Tuesday July 7.
“All of us agree that the best thing to do is to close the border,” he said.
It’s the first time the border between Australia’s two most populous states has closed since 1919.
The decision comes following an early meeting today between Prime Minister Scott Morrison, NSW premier Gladys Berejiklian and Andrews, who discussed the recent spike in cases in Victoria, which has led to more stringent lockdowns in affected postcodes. Today Victoria reported 127 new cases – the highest ever daily increase since the pandemic began.
The Victoria-NSW border remained open during the strict lockdown period from March to May, although Queensland, Tasmania, South Australia and Western Australia all closed their borders.
It’s not yet known how the lockdown will affect border crossings and border towns such as Albury–Wodonga. There are 50 border crossings between Victoria and NSW.
While the border remains open until tomorrow night, anyone travelling from Victorian hotspots into NSW could face fines of up to $11,000 or six months’ jail time, per the ABC’s reporting.
More to come.