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To help our readers, The Bunbury Bulletin has put together a list of possible questions you may have about the COVID-19 lockdown.

Why is this happening?
This lockdown is occurring after a male security guard at Perth’s Four Points Hotel caught COVID-19 while working in hotel quarantine this week. He tested positive last night. Although it won’t be confirmed until at least Tuesday, it is believed he may have the more viral UK strain of COVID-19.

What is happening?
From 6pm tonight, more than 80 percent of the state’s population will go into lockdown until at 6pm on Friday. The regions impacted are the Perth metropolitan area, the Peel region (Mandurah and surrounds) and the South West region (Bunbury, Busselton, Collie, Manjimup, Margaret River and surrounds).

What are the rules?
The rules are simple: stay home unless you absolutely must leave the house. There are only four exemptions to this rule. 
- If you are buying essential goods (e.g. going to supermarket or pharmacy)
- If you are an essential worker (e.g. your job can’t be done at home and is necessary to society)
- If you are receiving medical help (e.g. you need to go to the GP or the hospital)
- If you are exercising for a maximum of one hour a day. You can only exercise with one other person.
If you do leave the house, you must wear a mask. It doesn’t matter whether you are inside, outside or on public transport.

What is shutting down?
Basically everything that isn’t essential. Pubs, bars, libraries, skateparks, churches, you name it. Services such as supermarkets, petrol stations and pharmacies will remain open. Restaurants and cafes will still be allowed to open, but will strictly be takeaway only.

Where are the locations visited by the security guard?
At this stage, all of the locations are in Perth. Maylands is the main area, but there are multiple sites around the city where the man visited. At the time of publication, there are no sites where infected individuals have visited in the South West. All locations can be found on the Department of Health website (

The community transmission case is in Perth. Why is the South West getting locked down?
The state government appears to be acting with an abundance of caution. Obviously a number of people have travelled between the Perth metropolitan area and places like Busselton and Margaret River in recent days given the Australia Day public holiday on Tuesday and it being the last week of the summer school holidays.

I want/need to get tested, where do I need to go?
If you are here in Bunbury, there is a public testing clinic at the South West Health Campus on the corner of Robinson Drive and Bussell Highway. All public testing sites will be open until 10pm tonight and reopen at 8am tomorrow. Be patient as there is likely to be high demand. You can find other testing sites by searching for them online.

Can I travel to other parts of the state?
Only essential travel will be permitted between Perth, the Peel and South West regions and the rest of the state from 6pm tonight. There will be police checkpoints set up tomorrow to enforce the restrictions. These will likely be at the same locations as the checkpoints during the first lockdown early last year. Be aware that you will need a G2G Pass to travel.

Can I return home if I am in other parts of the state currently?
Yes, you can travel into the lockdown area as long as you are doing so to return to your primary place of residence (the house you normally live in). Be aware that you will likely need a G2G Pass to travel.

What’s happening with the schools?
As you would be well aware, students were supposed to return from their summer break tomorrow. However, that will now not happen until next week. This applies to both public and private schools. 

Are any visitors allowed to your house?
No, unless you are being cared for. You must stay home at all times unless you are complying with one of the exemptions mentioned above.

I have medical appointments and/or surgeries scheduled this week. What is happening to them?
Essential surgeries and appointments will continue this week. If your appointment or surgery has to be rescheduled at a hospital, you will be contacted soon about it. Do not contact the hospital. If it is an appointment at another service such as a GP clinic, you may want to contact them for further details.

Can I visit loved ones in a hospital or care home?
All aged care and disability care homes will be blocked from receiving visitors during the lockdown. The same rule applies for hospitals (both public and private), though the Chief Health Officer Andrew Robertson has suggested some exemptions will be made on a case by case basis (e.g. close family members visiting a dying relative).

What is happening with weddings and funerals?
Weddings held this week will have to be cancelled. Funerals will be limited to ten people.

Will we go back to normal on Friday night?
It appears that is highly unlikely. At the press conference to announce the measures, Premier Mark McGowan suggested that a gradual easing of restrictions over many weeks was far more likely to occur.

What about the rest of the state?
If you live outside of the south west corner of the state (including the Great Southern and Wheatbelt), there will be no changes to your day to day life. Stay outside of the lockdown area if you can.

What about the state election campaign?
If you were not already aware, the major political parties were in full election mode before today’s announcement. The Labor and Liberal parties have both suspended their campaigns. WA will go to the polls on March 13.

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