South Australia closes its borders to slow the spread of COVID-19

South Australia will temporarily close its borders to potential visitors in the hopes of slowing the spread of COVID-19.

With Bordertown and other Tatiara towns being located close to the South Australia/Victoria border, it is unknown how the restrictions will affect the district.

Robe District Council is believed to be the first local government body in the state to discourage visitors from travelling to their district.

As part of their restrictions, the council said their local supermarket might be unable to sell goods to anyone from outside the area.

Tatiara District Council are yet to make a statement on whether they will follow in Robe District Council's footsteps.

At a press-conference held on Sunday, premier Steven Marshall stated the recent surge in cases brought from interstate had forced the decision.

The closure means that all people entering South Australia must isolate for 14-days from their arrival.

This applies to South Australians, other Australians and other travellers, and will be supported by border control from Tuesday, March 24 at 4pm.

The newly enforced changes will see people undertaking essential transport to be exempt from the restrictions.

Exemptions will be given to people transporting health and medical supplies, health personnel and patients, food and commercial supply chains (i.e. the carrying of goods), healthcare workers, near border interactions, travel of a relative/carer of a dependant individual, and for emergency services.

"We do need to keep freight moving through the borders so we can get food to distribution centres and keep the economy moving," Premier Marshall said.

"We will get through this and we will minimise the impact on our population by following these restrictions."

Other travellers, including fly-in-fly-out workers in the mining industry or national level sporting teams, could be exempt from the rules providing they have approved disease control mechanisms in place.

The state's criteria for testing for COVID-19 has also been expanded from Sunday (March 22) to include anyone who has travelled from interstate in the last seven days and have new respiratory symptoms.

SA Health has urged residents to only present for testing if they fulfill a specific criteria:

  • You have travelled overseas in the past 14 days and have symptoms.
  • You have travelled interstate in the past 7 days and have new respiratory symptoms.
  • You have been in contact with a confirmed case and have symptoms.
  • You are a healthcare worker with direct patient contact and have a fever (37.5) AND an acute respiratory infection (e.g. shortness of breath, cough, sore throat).

South Australia Police will continue to conduct random checks to ensure those required to self-isolate are doing so.

Yesterday 17 new cases were confirmed in the state taking the total to 67.

More information about COVID-19 can be found at: https://bit.ly/2vESNiK

Information on self-isolation and quarantine can be found at: https://bit.ly/2xWFVoV