More than 140 people have been fined across Victoria for breaching self-isolation or social distancing laws so far this weekend.
Of the 751 spot checks carried out at homes and businesses by police, almost one in five were found to be breaching the recently implemented laws.
The fines were handed out across the state in both city and country areas.
The incredible number of fines handed out has been slammed by the state’s deputy police commissioner who said rule breakers were putting ‘lives at risk’.
‘While the majority of the Victorian community are doing the right thing, there are people that continue to flout the rules and put people’s lives at risk,’ Victoria Police deputy commissioner Shane Patton said.
Victoria Police have handed out more than 140 fines to people disobeying self-isolation orders so far this weekend
Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews said the state was ‘not mucking around’ when it came to the strict coronavirus measures. Victoria has experienced a drop in coronavirus cases in past days
‘Our message is this – people should not be leaving their own home for any reason other than the four we have described, if they do there is every chance they will receive a significant fine.’
Those caught abandoning self-isolation after returning from overseas or gathering in groups of more than two people can be fined $1652 on-the-spot.
The high number of people flaunting the rules comes in the wake of another drop in the number of coronavirus cases in Victoria.
Just 20 new cases were recorded in the state on Saturday, taking the total to 1,135.
Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews said that despite the positive news, police would not be relenting in dishing out fines.
‘Police are not mucking about,’ Mr Andrews said.
‘We are having some really significant success, but we’ve got a long way to go.
‘If you look at other parts of the world you can see what failure looks like.’
During a press conference on Sunday morning, Mr Andrews also announced Victoria would be spending $20 million on hotel rooms for healthcare workers to self-isolate in if they contract coronavirus.
Mr Andrews announced a $20 million plan to hire hotel rooms for hospital and medical staff to self-isolate in if they contract COVID-19
It follows the federal government’s policy which has seen all returned tourists forced to stay in hotels under police guard to ensure they do not breach quarantine (Pictured is the Swissotel in Sydney’s CBD)
The announcement follows a similar plan that was unveiled in South Australia during the week.
It comes amid concern over an outbreak within the Alfred Hospital one of the state’s largest hospitals.
‘Front-line healthcare workers, indeed, anyone across the public health system who has a public-facing role who tests positive or has to isolate because they may be positive to COVID-19, we’ll put them up in a hotel room – [at] no cost to them,’ Mr Andrews said.
‘This will be a matter of their choice. Many will choose to avail themselves of that hotel room option because they might live with older people.
‘They might live in a share house with a range of other workers. They might have people at home in their household who are vulnerable for one reason or another.’