NT closes border with Victoria, says sorry
The Northern Territory has declared all of Victoria a coronavirus hotspot and closed its border with the southern state.
"I am declaring all of Victoria a hotspot for the purposes of travel to the Northern Territory," Chief Minister Michael Gunner said on Wednesday.
"The territory's borders will stay closed to all of Victoria until further notice. They are shut indefinitely."
Metropolitan Melbourne and Mitchell Shire, north of the city, are prepared to enter a six-week lockdown at midnight on Wednesday as Victoria tries to control a rapid escalation of COVID-19 cases.
Victoria's stage three lockdown is not statewide but the NT government has reassessed the situation after NSW closed its western border with Victoria overnight.
"Melbourne is out-of-control. That makes it harder for the rest of Victoria to stay in control," Mr Gunner said.
"That is not a risk that we, in the territory, are prepared to take.
"So to the rest of Victoria - I am sorry, you haven't done anything wrong but it is my job to put the territory first."
Victoria is now completely isolated from its neighbouring mainland states.
Prior to Wednesday's announcement, travellers from Victoria to the NT were required to isolate for 14 days.
A record 191 new cases of coronavirus was recorded in Melbourne on Tuesday. The number of confirmed infections has been escalating for almost three weeks.
"We hoped Victoria would get better, but it didn't, it got worse," Mr Gunner added.