There are three key reasons.
First – the escalating cases in Melbourne.
Second – the extending community transmission.
And third – the unacceptable risk of spread to regional areas.
Yesterday’s 191 cases in Victoria was the highest daily number since this crisis began.
More than 150 of those cases are still under investigation, which means the source of the infection is yet to be explained. They don’t know where it is coming from.
Although the outbreaks are in certain suburbs of Melbourne, they are spread across the metropolitan area, making them more difficult to contain.
And there are only two local government areas in Melbourne that don’t now have an active case.
The lockdown has happened quite slowly and many areas of concern were not subject to the earlier postcode lockdowns.
I know Victorian communities outside Melbourne were wondering why we are targeting them as well when they’re not the problem right now. When you look at the data, you can see the areas of highest risk are on the edges of metropolitan Melbourne, areas like Hume and Wyndham.
That makes the risk of spread outside Melbourne higher. One adjoining area, the Mitchell shire, already has an outbreak and has to go into lockdown.
We also have reports of large numbers of visitors from Melbourne and regional Victorian communities for the school holidays. For these reasons while the spread is confined mainly in the Melbourne area, we cannot be confident at this time it will stay in that area.
Melbourne is out of control. That makes it harder for the rest of Victoria to stay in control. That is not a risk that we, in the territory, are prepared to take. So to the rest of Victoria – I am sorry, you haven’t done anything wrong but it is my job to put the territory first.