There is some confusion about how the new restrictions to prevent Coronavirus affect areas outside Melbourne such as Daylesford and Hepburn Springs. Stage 3 or ‘stay at home’ restrictions now apply to Greater Melbourne and Mitchell Shire. Stage 2 or ‘stay safe’ restrictions remain in force for Daylesford and Hepburn Shire.
The restricted areas of Greater Melbourne and Mitchell Shire are not completely out of bounds for Daylesford and Hepburn residents, but you need a good reason to travel there. These are:
- Shopping for food or other essential items
- To provide care giving, for compassionate reasons or to seek medical treatment
- Work or study, if you cannot work or study from home
You can travel through the Greater Melbourne Area or the Shire of Mitchell on a trip to another destination outside these areas provided you plan it so you don’t stop in the restricted zone.
You are not permitted to go into the Greater Melbourne Area or the Shire of Mitchell for exercise.
Unlike the first round of stage-three restrictions, people who live in the Greater Melbourne area or the Shire of Mitchell must stay in their principal place of residence and may not ride out the lockdown in a holiday house in an area outside the lockdown area such as Daylesford or Hepburn Springs.
There are heavy on the spot fines for individuals and businesses that fail to comply with the COVID-19 restrictions.
Stage 2 restrictions for Daylesford and Hepburn Springs mean that:
- Private gatherings are limited to no more than 5 people in a house, in addition to the normal residents of the household
- Public gatherings outdoors are limited to 20 people;
- Restaurants cafes and pubs can open and serve meals for up to 20 patrons;
- Shops, galleries and retail services like massage and beauty services can open provided they maintain social distancing requirements. The Sunday Market can also open provided market organisers maintain social distancing requirements.
- Community facilities like the library can open with up to 20 visitors in each space provided the 4 square metre per person rule is applied
- Weddings are limited to 20 guests, plus the couple and celebrant;
- Up to 50 mourners can attend at funerals;
- Overnight stays are permitted in private residences and holiday accommodation for people other than residents from Greater Melbourne and Mitchell Shire.
- Primary and Secondary Schools have returned to face to face learning
- Residents of care facilities, including aged care, can have up to two support visits each day. Residents can have a total of two visitors for up to a total of two hours
- Places of worship can open for private worship or small religious ceremonies for up to 20 people in each separate area.
Remember the basic personal rules that apply to everyone to prevent infections are:
- To maintain 1.5 metres’ distance between yourself and people outside your immediate household.
- To wash or sanitise your hands thoroughly and often, especially after using the bathroom, before eating and after coughing or sneezing.
- To get a COVID-19 test immediately if you experience even mild symptoms, such as a sore throat, runny nose, cough or fever, then stay at home until receiving a negative result. The respiratory (COVID) clinic is located at the Community Health Centre at 13 Hospital St, Daylesford. You should call ahead on 5321 6654 (see here for information)
- The federal government is urging Australians to download the COVIDSafe app, to help authorities speed up contacting people who may have been exposed to the virus.
If you concerns or questions about coronavirus (COVID-19) there is a helpline 1800 675 398.