Queen Victoria Market stallholders forced into isolation after fruit and vegetable section listed as COVID-19 exposure site15th February 2021
The Department of Health listed the A and B sheds at Queen Victoria Market, and Yarra Trams route numbers 11 and 58, as exposure sites on Sunday afternoon.
Trading at the market had already been down as a result of last year’s rolling lockdowns, especially when stage four restrictions were in place and – as a metropolitan market – when the five-kilometre rule was in place.
“It’s been an incredibly challenging time for the market really for the last 12 months,” Mr Liacos said.
“This is an additional blow. But it’s a very resilient community, the trader community. And we’ll just work through this.”
Cleaning teams were conducting a deep clean of the fruit and vegetable sheds, as well as “high-touch” areas throughout the market, on Monday.
The market, which is closed on Monday, is due to reopen on Tuesday.
Mr Liacos said the Department of Health had confirmed the Queen Victoria Market was not a current risk and remained safe to visit.
Victorian COVID-19 response commander Jeroen Weimar said authorities were working rapidly to get in touch with anyone who was at the market on Thursday morning.
Premier Daniel Andrews on Monday defended the state’s contact tracing efforts amid the Holiday Inn outbreak.
“Yesterday, we had identified some 949 primary close contacts. That number has now grown to around 1100. There are also almost 600 people who are linked to Melbourne Airport Terminal 4,” he said.
Mr Andrews said 931 of the 933 close contacts identified on February 11 were contacted within 48 hours.
“It is the guideline, that is the standard, that is 99.8 per cent, so that is a very strong result,” he said.
with Marissa Calligeros
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Bianca Hall is City Editor for The Age. She has previously worked as a senior reporter, and in the Canberra federal politics bureau.