New coronavirus restrictions have been announced today by the Victorian Government that will be in place from 5pm tonight, limiting indoor gatherings to 15 guests and making the use of masks indoors mandatory.

According to acting Premier of Victoria, Jacinta Allan, -who is stepping in for Daniel Andrews who is currently on leave- the new restrictions will be imposed on tonight’s celebrations planned across Victoria. Those who have arranged New Years’ Eve gatherings will need to reduce the number of their guests from the existing limit of 30, to 15. And those gathered indoors will need to wear a mask.

She added that the only people who will be allowed to enter into Melbourne’s CBD for New Year’s Eve are those who have already made bookings at a venue.

The new restrictions come as the Health Authorities recorded three new cases in the community, in Melbourne, yesterday, ending the 61-day streak of zero community transmissions in the state. Since then, the Department of Health and Human Services testing commander, Jeroen Weimar, announced the detection of three additional linked cases bringing the total number of cases recorded in the community to six.

The new cases have been linked to a restaurant in Melbourne’s south-east and are directly or indirectly traced to the Smile Buffalo Thai restaurant at Black Rock on December 21.

“On that night, one case and two close contacts of cases attended this restaurant, as did a returned traveller from New South Wales,” Ms Allan stated.

Updates on the list of public exposure sites are being regularly posted on the website of the Department of Health and Human Services. Locations and outbreaks

So far the exposure sites listed are:

Smile Buffalo Thai restaurant at Black Rock on December 21

Century City Walk and Mocha Jo’s in Glen Waverley between 1:30pm and 5:00pm on December 28

Katialo restaurant in the Eaton Mall at Oakleigh between 7:00pm and 8:15pm on December 28

Mentone/Parkdale Beach at Mentone between 10:00am and 4:30pm on December 27

Holy Family Parish Doveton between 4:00pm and 6:00pm on December 26

Kmart, Big W, Target, Millers, King of Gifts and Lacoste stores at Fountain Gate Shopping Centre on December 26 between 9:00am and 11:00am

All those who have visited these sites during the indicated times must get tested and isolate until they receive a negative result.