Thousands of health workers are knocking on doors in the worst-affected areas of Melbourne urging residents to get tested for coronavirus, with officials saying about 10,000 people have refused after being influenced by online disinformation.
Borders between Victoria, of which Melbourne is the capital, and neighbouring states closed on Tuesday.
"The rest of the country knows that the sacrifice that you're going through right now is not just for you and your own family, but it's for the broader Australian community", Morrison said during a televised media conference.
The state reported 134 new infections in the 24 hours to Wednesday morning, down from the previous day's record 191 but well over the low single digit daily increases of the other states and territories.
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the country was now considering limiting the number of citizens returning from overseas, after Victoria began diverting worldwide flights to other cities to ease the burden on its quarantine facilities. Two of the infected people had returned from Melbourne last week, and the third was their housemate. The spike has anxious officials, even though the national total of nearly 8,800 cases and 106 deaths is far below many other countries.
A major health breach occurred on Tuesday night after it was revealed passengers on a flight from Melbourne were able to disembark without undergoing proper screening for coronavirus.More news: Stocks edge higher at start with help from Apple
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Melburnians will be allowed to leave home only for essential business.
Schools will delay reopening classrooms and continue distance learning during the duration of the lockdown while restaurants will shift to takeout service only, the BBC reported.
However, shops and hairdressers will remain open.
Victoria also closed its border to New South Wales, adding military patrols to prevent illegal travel.
Police checkpoints have been set up at major road crossings and drones are monitoring large sections of the vast border, with one man arrested Wednesday after allegedly attempting to cross illegally.More news: Severe thunderstorm warning issued for Toronto, reports of severe flooding
As of Thursday, they will also be doing random checks on vehicles in and around the city.
For months Australia had felt optimistic about containing Covid-19, then came the resurgence of the virus in Melbourne. Around 3,000 residents have been banned from leaving the buildings, which are under police guard, for five days.
A looser lockdown was placed on about 300,000 city residents, now extended to the whole city.
"There is a volume that can be accommodated by the (other) states and territories now, but they certainly wouldn't want to see that increase", he told reporters in Canberra.
The government has ordered a judicial inquiry into the state's quarantine operation and has fired contractors.More news: OnePlus Nord Is Officially On Its Way To Malaysia