Victoria to introduce traffic light permit system for all travel into state

Victoria to introduce traffic light permit system for all travel into state

A new travel permit system based on a traffic light structure will be introduced in Victoria this afternoon for all incoming domestic travellers, giving Australians further clarity and certainty when they travel.

The traffic light system see the chief health officer declare other regions in parts of Australia as green, orange, or red, depending on the COVID-19 risk.

Depending on a state's status, certain restrictions will apply for travellers from a given area.

The new structure will come into effect from 5.59pm today.

"Until we have a vaccine, we'll need to continue to react and respond to changing circumstances," Victoria Premier Daniel Andrews said.

"This system will make sure we can do just that, while supporting the rapid response of our contact tracing team.

"With an easy to understand traffic light system, Victorians and Australians will understand exactly what the latest public health advice means for them, and their travel plans."

The type of permit will depend on where you have been, with applicants required to provide details on where they are coming from and where they are traveling to. These details will allow the contact tracing team to rapidly reach people should a new risk emerge.

The traffic light system

A red zone means if travellers have visited this area in the past 14 days they will not be allowed to enter Victoria without an exception or exemption. If they try to enter Victoria at a land border they will be turned away.

Returned Victorian travellers arriving by plane or by water without a valid reason or exemption will be required to self-isolate at home for 14 days and will receive a fine of $4,957.

Interstate residents presenting at an airport or seaport without a valid reason or exemption will be fined $4,957 and returned to their destination on the next available flight.

If this requires an overnight stay, these individuals will need to stay in hotel quarantine until their departure.

An orange zone means that travellers will be able to apply for a permit and will need to take a coronavirus test within 72 hours after arriving in Victoria, isolating both before and after your test, until they receive a negative result.

Under this system regional NSW, including the Central Coast, will be reclassified as an orange zone.

A green zone means that travellers will be able to apply for a permit and enter Victoria.

As part of the permit application, travellers will also be asked whether they have any COVID-19 symptoms, whether they have been diagnosed with COVID-19 or are a close contact with someone who has and whether they have visited particular exposure sites.

Until then current permits, including transit and worker permits, will remain valid.

"The necessary public health restrictions in place for the New South Wales border have been without doubt a challenge but they've also been integral to making sure we protect the wins of every single Victorian," Minister for Health Martin Foley said.

Updated 3.29pm AEDT on 11 January 2021.

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