Does stage 4 ‘shock and awe’ in Melbourne mean we should have gone for elimination of coronavirus after all? | Gay Alcorn

Declaring a ‘state of disaster’ in Victoria gives police more authority, and hope that Covid cases can be contained within six weeks

Even the vast majority of Victorians who accepted stage 3 restrictions as necessary, if depressing, would have been confronted by what premier Daniel Andrews announced on Sunday. They were the tightest coronavirus restrictions ever imposed in Australia and among the toughest in the world.

Melburnians had just got used to compulsory mask wearing and now are to be confined to their homes from 8pm to 5am except for medical reasons or for essential work, at the risk of a $1,652 fine if they break curfew. Had this ever happened outside war time? There was no such curfew in New Zealand even in their “go early and go hard” response earlier this year.

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