The stuff you need to know about school, travel, shopping and government updates during the coronavirus pandemic.
**Updated April 28**
Firstly, wash your hands. Regularly.
You might want to download some lyrics that go for the recommended 20 seconds, based on your fave song.
Can I leave my house?
People can leave their homes, but only if it’s absolutely essential.
Which means you can go to the shops, go to work or to the pharmacy, for example.
If you wish to get some fresh air and exercise outside, you must comply with social distancing measures and stay 1.5 metres apart.
Most businesses, including major retailers and department stores, can continue if they comply with social distancing guidelines.
Cafes and restaurants (including those in food courts) can still operate, but can only offer takeaway and delivery services. No, you can’t sit in the food court, sorry.
The following have been labelled ‘essential’ and will remain open:
- Petrol stations
- Convenience stores
- Freight and logistics
- Takeaway food and delivery
- Bottle shops, now with restrictions
Kmart addicts, yes, it’s business as usual.
Bunnings, yes, with some changes
Activities that are OK
Still OK, but with restrictions
- Weddings restricted to a maximum headcount of 10 people
- Funerals capped at a maximum of 10 mourners – states and territories can provide exemptions to the 10-person limit for funerals in cases of hardship
- Food courts in shopping centres – takeaway only
- Hairdressers/barbers – strict 4sqm social distancing (30 min time limit has been lifted)
- Boot Camp and personal training sessions – only one-on-one classes are now permitted
- Indoor places of worship
- Beauty, nail and tattoo shops, massage (excluding health-related services like physio)
- Real estate auctions, open house inspections, arcades, galleries, museums
- Amusement parks, arcades, play centres (both indoor and outdoor)
- Pools, sporting activities
- Libraries, community and rec centres
- Gun shops and dealerships
- playgrounds, outdoor gyms and skate parks
Buses, trains and ferries
From Monday 6 April, Transperth will reduce their services.
No one from over east will be allowed entry into WA and turned around – UNLESS they are an approved exempt traveller.
An exempt traveller must perform one of the following functions:
– Health services
– Emergency services
– Transport, freight and logistics
– Specialists skills, not available in WA, for industry or business continuity
– National or State security and governance; and
– Courts and judicial services
- Australians are currently banned from travelling overseas – exceptions will be made for aid workers and for compassionate, employment and other essential travel.
Travelling within WA
- Travel within the state has been restricted to regional boundaries.
- Freight and essential travel, such as for work or co-parenting arrangements, are exempted.
- Compassionate exemptions also apply – more here
- Border lockdowns are now in place for Western Australia.
— Chris Olejko (@C_Ollie13) March 24, 2020
Freight and essential travel beyond the WA border is exempted. This means there’s no need to panic-buy anything, OK?
Stuff like food, gas, medicine and other goods will be delivered via road, rail, air and sea as normal.
Schools In WA
- West Australian schools are set to reopen Wednesday, April 29.
- WA public schools will then be open for all parents and carers who choose to send their children
- Anyone who does not want their children to attend school in person, they can continue learning from home
- Year 11 and 12 students are strongly encouraged to attend in person
- Parents and carers of children and young people with complex medical needs are encouraged to seek medical advice regarding attendance at school.
Do I absolutely need to wear a facemask?
On the ABC’s Coronacast podcast, Dr Norman Swan says that while face masks do help prevent the transfer of droplets, you don’t need to wear one while walking down the street.
“…you are not going to get coronavirus from the air,” says Dr Swan.
“You have to be in close contact with someone who is infected to allow droplets to be transferred. So even if you are on a plane and there is someone who has the virus sitting three rows away, you’re probably not going to get it. The problem arises with large crowds that are closely crammed together such as on tightly packed trains.”
I’ve Got No Toilet Paper, Can I Flush Wipes Down The Loo?
Panic-buying has led to people going without toilet paper and forced to use alternatives, here’s what you can and can’t flush:
NO – these must never be flushed, bin them after use.
- Baby wipes (even the ones that say they’re flushable)
- Cotton balls, pads and tips
- Menstrual products (they expand in water, they don’t break down)
- Nappies (you shouldn’t even be able to flush these so don’t even try it)
- Paper towels
- Tissues (nope, they aren’t designed to break down)
YES – can flush
- Human waste
- Toilet paper
Be Wary Of Misinformation Being Spread By A Friend Of Your Uncle’s Workmate’s Hairdresser’s Uber Driver’s Hamster
You might have seen a couple of these floating around:
Guys, do not believe the hype. It’s pure misinformation.
Botica’s Bunch debunked a string of them recently.
What Are The Symptoms Of COVID-19?
They can range from mild illness to pneumonia. Some people will recover easily, and others may get very sick very quickly.
People with coronavirus may experience:
- flu-like symptoms such as coughing, sore throat and fatigue
- shortness of breath
If you are concerned you may have it, here’s the symptom checker on Healthdirect.
I’m feeling anxious and overwhelmed, what can I do about it?
If you need somebody to talk to, consider reaching out to Beyond Blue on 1300 224 636 or read their really good advice here.
For the latest medical advice and official reports – here’s the Australian Government’s health alert.
Botica’s Bunch also spoke to Tegan Carrison from the Australian Association of Psychologists about mental health during the pandemic…
Hit PLAY to listen to the podcast…