Andrews Outlines Victoria's Home Visit Rules

Andrews Outlines Victoria's Home Visit Rules
A man runs along a waterway amid lockdown restrictions in Melbourne, Australia, on July 10, 2020. (Sandra Sanders/Reuters)

Home visits in Melbourne will be restricted to one per day as the city emerges from its COVID-19 lockdown.

Premier Daniel Andrews announced tight rules on how Melbourne residents can start visiting each other.

Two adults with dependents can only visit another home once per day.

Anyone who has a visitor also cannot visit another home on that day.

Andrews said there would be "some complexities" around the rules, with visits also restricted to the 25 kilometre travel limit.

"I know it's not a nice thing to say or a nice thing for anyone to acknowledge but the place where you feel safest, your home, is actually the most dangerous environment for the spread of this virus," he said.

"That's why there has to be rules and if we all follow those rules then we keep each other safe, we be able to see the people we missed the most and loved the most but do it in a COVID-safe way."

Andrews added the home rules will remain beyond Nov. 8, when the 25 kilometre limit and the "ring of steel" separating Melbourne from regional Victoria are set to end.

Confirmations of the home rules come as Victoria had its second-straight day of no coronavirus deaths and no new cases.

The last virus death was on Oct. 19 and the state toll remains at 817, with the national figure on 905.

The clean sheet comes the day after Andrews announced a widespread easing of Melbourne's restrictions, effective at midnight on Tuesday, marking the end of its lockdown.

Melbourne's 14-day case average is down to 2.8 and there were six mystery cases from Oct. 11-24.

The corresponding figures for regional Victoria are 0.2 and none.

Home visit rules were the notable absence from Melbourne's long list of eased lockdown rules.

Monday's long-awaited announcement was prompted by Victoria's first clean slate of cases and deaths since June 9 and the results of a testing blitz on an outbreak in the city's north.

The "proud" premier's voice croaked with emotion as he announced the dramatic lockdown changes, headlined by the reopening of Melbourne retail and hospitality venues.

Andrews had been under intense pressure to ease restrictions while also awaiting the final report from an inquiry into the botched hotel quarantine program, widely believed to have sparked Victoria's devastating second wave.

But Monday marked a significant shift in Victoria's coronavirus campaign.

Melbourne retail and hospitality businesses can begin trading again from midnight on Tuesday, with a "dark" reopening effective immediately so staff can prepare.

There will be a maximum of 20 people seated indoors for hospitality venues—10 per space—and 50 outdoors.

Beauty, personal services and tattoo parlours will also reopen, and there are widespread changes from outdoor fitness to religious gatherings.