Darwin lockdown lifted but Katherine stay-at-home orders remain

The Northern Territory has recorded no new local cases of coronavirus in the last 24 hours.

NT Chief Minister Michael Gunner said the lack of cases meant authorities were comfortable lifting the lockdown for Greater Darwin at midday today.

However, the lockdown for Katherine is being extended for a least a further 24 hours.

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DARWIN, AUSTRALIA - AUGUST 16: Darwin CBD during lockdown on August 16, 2021 in Darwin, Australia. Northern Territory Chief Minister Michael Gunner has announced a snap three-day lockdown for Greater Darwin and the Katherine regions following a confirmed positive COVID-19 case who spent time in the community while infectious. Restrictions came into effect at midday and will be in place for 72 hours, set to expire at midday on Thursday  19 August. (Photo by Charlie Bliss/Getty Images)

Authorities are trying to contact 12 people who were at a Katherine Woolworths store.

"We need Katherine to hang tight for another day," Mr Gunner said.

When restrictions lift in Darwin, there will be no restrictions on leaving the home but a number of rules will still apply until at least midday on Thursday, August 26.

Masks must be worn in Darwin when people in public and can't maintain a 1.5 metre distance.

They must also be worn in workplaces where social distancing can't be maintained, on public transport, in taxis and rideshares.

Mr Gunner said residents need to wear a mask while shopping and when going out to dine, but can be removed while eating and drinking. .

Darwin residents enjoy their hour of exercise

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Residents should also wear a mask while queueing for coffee and takeaway.

Katherine is expected to move to the same eased restrictions as Greater Darwin tomorrow.

Mr Gunner said the restrictions were in place to protect Northern Territory residents.

"We do it because we value our fellow Territorians, our friends and neighbours, our Territorian way of life. We want to hold onto it," Mr Gunner said.

"We do it because of the oldest continuous culture on the planet … to protect it. We take that responsibility very seriously."

The NT town of Katherine is in lockdown.

Katherine lockdown rules explained

From 12.00pm on Thursday, August 19, residents of the Municipality of Katherine, including Tindalc, must stay at home for the 24-hour lockdown period.

People are only permitted to leave home for the following five reasons:

  • Medical treatment, including COVID testing or vaccination
  • For essential goods and services, like groceries and medications
  • For work that is considered essential and cannot be done at home
  • For one hour of outdoor exercise a day within five kilometres from your home in the company of no one other than the following: if the person resides alone – one other person; or if the person does not reside alone – one or more of the other persons residing at the same premises
  • In case of an emergency or if there is family violence or to provide essential care to a loved one or dependent who cannot support themselves and co-parenting arrangements

Masks must be worn at all times when leaving home.

All businesses, retail outlets, hospitality venues, gyms, pools and community centres are closed.

Cafes and restaurants are able to offer take-away and delivery services.

Schools will be closed except for the children of essential workers.

Childcare centres will open only for the children of essential workers.

Police will be establishing interception points to control travel in and out of these regions.

Territorians in the lockdown areas should not travel – including out of the Territory – unless it is for one of the five reasons.

Non-Territorians in the lockdown areas are permitted to leave the Territory by air only.

The three-day lockdown was announced on Monday after a man in his 30s tested positive for COVID-19.

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NT Chief Minister Michael Gunner

COVID-19 testing sites are open across the NT.

Northern Territory residents can book online or contact the COVID-19 Hotline on 1800 490 484.

Greater Darwin restrictions explained

Restrictions for Greater Darwin will be in place until 12pm on August 26 for high-risk activities to reduce the risk of COVID-19.

All businesses and places where customers and clients visit need to use a check-in system, like The Territory Check-In App.

Pen and paper will still be permitted. Residents are still required to check in everywhere they go, regardless of the time spend at that location.

From 12pm today, there will be no restrictions on the reasons to leave home if you live in Greater Darwin, however residents are asked to remain COVID-19 safe.

Travel

  • Travel is permitted outside of Greater Darwin – a mask must be worn when you cannot maintain a physical distance of 1.5 metres.

Face masks

  • Face masks must be worn in public when you cannot maintain a physical distance of 1.5 metres.
  • Wear a mask at places like the supermarket, shopping centre, the hairdresser and beauty salons.
  • Wear a mask when out for dinner but it can be removed when seated and eating and drinking.
  • Masks are not required at work where physical distancing of 1.5m can be applied.
  • Workers who come into close contact with patrons, or who work in environments where physical distancing of 1.5m cannot be applied will need to wear a mask. This includes people who work in retail, hospitality, the beauty sector and customer service industries.
  • Masks must be worn on public transport, taxis and ride-share services
  • You do not need to wear a mask when at home

Visitors at home

  • You can have up to 10 people visit your home at a time, not including household members.

Businesses

  • All businesses and places where customers and clients visit must use the Territory Check-In App and be able to comply with physical distancing and mask-wearing requirements.
  • Hospitality venues are open for seated service only. Patrons will be required to wear a mask when they go to the bar to order but this can be removed when seated and eating and drinking.

Gatherings

  • Private gatherings may occur including weddings and funerals.
  • Physical distancing and mask-wearing is required.
  • Guests should practice high levels of personal hygiene including hand washing and sanitising.
  • Guests should not attend if sick.

Events

  • Big events must have a QR Code system in place and be able to comply with physical distancing and mask wearing requirements.
  • Markets are a high-risk site and will remain closed.

Sport

  • Indoor exercise including at gyms, Zumba, barre, pilates and yoga studios will remain closed.
  • Non-contact sports permitted. This includes golf, tennis, cricket and swimming.

Place of Worship

  • Places of worship will open. A check-in system should be used, masks must be worn and physical distancing applied.

Education and childcare

  • Schools, vacation care and childcare centres will open 20 August 2021. Mask requirements apply to people aged 12 and over.

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