WA Premier Mark McGowan is renewing his push for remote commonwealth facilities to be used for quarantining returned travellers in a bid to stop the spread of the highly contagious UK variant of COVID-19.
Mr McGowan said other measures had recently been undertaken, including halving the number of international arrivals and masks at airports, following concerns about the British strain.
“We need to constantly review and constantly update,” he told reporters on Thursday.
“I’m more than happy to have another conversation with the federal government about the use of remote commonwealth facilities because those facilities are there and they are available and there are experienced staff that can deal with these matters.”
One of the locations the Premier wants to use is Christmas Island.
“Clearly with the British strain that’s something we should reconsider,” he said.
However, Mr McGowan said quarantining travellers at tourist hub Rottnest Island, as was previously done, was not a consideration.
Six people are quarantining at home in WA because they had been at the Grand Chancellor Hotel in Brisbane, which has been evacuated after testing found six cases linked to the UK strain of COVID-19.
They have so far all tested negative for the virus, and the Premier said their close contacts were being monitored daily.
“They will be further tested, obviously, as time goes by,” he said.
Mr McGowan said the situation in Queensland was “inexplicable” and showed the British strain was very worrying.
“We don’t want it to get out into the community,” he said.
“No one can guarantee that a mistake won’t be made or that somehow it gets in, but we’ll do everything within our power to prevent it.”
Mr McGowan said he would get further health advice about whether there were any other measures required to combat the UK strain.
WA recorded two new cases of coronavirus overnight — both are men in hotel quarantine.
It brings the state’s total number of confirmed infections to 881, including 17 active cases.