Australian Defence Force (ADF) personnel have arrived at the border between South Australia and Victoria to help barricade roads as part of coronavirus restrictions.
- About 100 Australian Defence Force personnel will be stationed along the border
- Colonel Graham Goodwin says the ADF staff will support SA Police
- A truck driver has self-isolated in Bordertown after having contact with confirmed COVID-19 cases in NSW
South Australian officials implemented a hard border earlier in the week, labelling Victoria’s outbreak a “clear threat”.
The ADF’s Colonel Graham Goodwin said 60 men and women arrived at the border on Sunday, performing duties “from Berri down to the Mount Gambier region”.
He said was number of deployed personnel was expected to rise to 100 in the coming days.
Colonel Goodwin said the ADF staff were working “in support of” SA Police, which increased its presence along SA’s eastern border as COVID-19 cases rose in Melbourne.
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He said there were 10 checkpoints along the border where ADF staff would work alongside police.
ADF personnel will also assist in mobile patrols of the area.
“Complacency is everywhere, so anything that we can do to prevent the spread of this disease, I think it should be employed,” Colonel Goodwin said.
“This is going to be an operation that goes on for some time.
“You don’t need me to tell you that South Australia is doing exceptionally well relative to other states and that’s because of things that have been implemented thus far.”
Colonel Graham Goodwin says about 100 ADF personnel will assist along the border.(ABC News: Isadora Bogle)
He said the ADF had been called on for an initial period of six weeks, but that time could be extended.
“We’ve got a lot of very enthusiastic, highly trained men and women in the Defence Force they joined to protect the nation.
“This is probably a little bit different to what they thought they’d be joining up for, but it is just as important right here, right now.
“They’re enthusiastic, they like to work, and they’re very glad to be here.”
Earlier in the week, hundreds of travellers made a last-minute dash from Victoria into South Australia before the hard border closure came into effect,
They included Melbourne residents seeking to escape their city’s coronavirus lockdown.
Now the restrictions are in place, only SA residents or those granted a special exemption are allowed to pass through checkpoints along the border.
All returning SA residents will be required to take a coronavirus test within 24 hours of their arrival and another 12 days later.
Victorian residents attempting to cross the border will be turned away unless they are essential travellers and abide by strict conditions.
Hostel fined, truck driver self-isolates
SA Police have fined an Adelaide hostel $5,060 for breaching COVID-19 guidelines.
Police attended the hostel on Waymouth Street about 8:00pm on Friday to conduct a compliance check.
Officers identified what they said was a lack of physical distancing and the business’s failure to have a COVID Safe plan in place.
Police also identified four people three men and one woman who had recently arrived from Victoria and were self-quarantining at the hostel.
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Officers reported concerns over the group’s ability to quarantine from other patrons, and engaged SA Health to move them to a hotel on North Terrace to complete their quarantine.
The group has been tested for coronavirus but police said the results were not yet known.
Police issued the business with an expiation for failing to have a COVID Safe plan, providing communal food and not providing space for physical distancing.
The business was directed to rectify all three, and other residents of the hostel were provided information about how to seek help if they developed flu-like symptoms.
Police have increased their presence along SA’s eastern border.(ABC News: Michael Clements)
In Bordertown, a truck driver has self-quarantined after learning he may have been in contact with two people in New South Wales who have tested positive to COVID-19.
Police were called to a hotel in Bordertown just before 9:00pm on Friday, after receiving information a truck driver had “remote contact” with confirmed coronavirus cases while interstate.
The truck driver has had a COVID-19 test and returned negative results, but has gone into self-quarantine in his Bordertown home.
Police closed the hotel, and other people on the premises at the time were asked to monitor their health and follow guidelines if they developed symptoms.
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