News State Victoria News Another 705 cases, one death as Vic eyes return of some freedoms

Another 705 cases, one death as Vic eyes return of some freedoms

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Restrictions will ease further in Victoria on Friday – with a warning for those yet to get a vaccine. Photo: Getty
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Victoria has confirmed another 705 local COVID-19 cases and one death.

The new infections bring the number of active cases in the state to 8538.

The state’s health department said more information would be provided on the death later on Monday. It brings the toll from the current outbreak to 25.

There were 51,252 coronavirus tests processed and 51,252 vaccine doses administered at state-run hubs on Sunday.

Monday’s update came ahead of restrictions easing slightly across the state on Wednesday, with Victoria expected to pass 80 per cent single-dose vaccination coverage on Tuesday.

  • See all of Victoria’s COVID exposure sites here

Premier Daniel Andrews said while the changes were “modest”, the state was inching closer to the end of lockdown.

Residents of locked-down areas will be able to travel 15 kilometres from home, up from 10 kilometres, while patron caps in regional venues will increase from 20 to 30.

Golf, tennis and cricket, as well as group personal training for up to five fully vaccinated adults, will also be able to resume.

There was also good news for the city of Geelong, which was released from lockdown overnight, despite the diagnosis of six more cases on Saturday. All cases were linked.

Lockdown also ended in the adjacent Surf Coast local government area.

A series of “vaccinated economy” trials were announced on Sunday, to begin across some regional Victorian businesses from October 11.

Select businesses in the regional shires of Buloke, Pyrenees, Bass Coast, Bendigo, East Gippsland and Warrnambool will test systems in the fortnight before Victoria is due to hit the 70 per cent double dose vaccination mark.

The 20 trial sites will be selected based on vaccination rates and case numbers.

Among the issues to be explored during the trials are vaccine status verification and how to help businesses safely deal with aggressive customers who are denied service.

Workers will have to enforce the rules and Mr Andrews said it was “critically important” that businesses appoint someone qualified to oversee the operation.

Elsewhere, country train services return to a full timetable for all services on all lines on Monday after a COVID-19 outbreak that limited services and meant buses replaced trains on some lines.

More than 77 per cent of Victorians aged 16 and over have now had at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, while more than 47 per cent have had two doses.

-with AAP