Only a few days after all of the major ski areas in Australia were finally open for the 2020 season, last Monday, when pandemic easing and adequate snow cover allowed, several have announced they’re closing again due to the surge of cases in Victoria.
Cases are surging in Melbourne, hundreds of kilometres to the south of the ski areas, they are not believed to be an issue in the resorts themselves.
“Due to the Stage 3 COVID-19 restrictions for the state of Victoria and the border closure with NSW, we have made the difficult decision to suspend lift operations at Hotham and Falls Creek, effective Thursday, 9 July through at least 19 August,” a statement from Mt Hotham today announces, continuing, “We recognise the impact this has on our guests, employees and communities and did not make this decision lightly. However, we are focused first and foremost on health and safety, following local health guidelines and doing our part to support efforts across Victoria to address the recent rise in coronavirus cases.”
“We will continue to assess the situation, follow the guidelines of the state health authorities in evaluating if it is advisable or feasible to reopen either resort this season. Perisher remains open and is unaffected by this decision,” the statement concludes.
Another Victoria ski area Mt Buller announced yesterday that it would operate through to the weekend but re-assess its position on Friday.
“From 11:59pm on 8 July, if you normally live in Melbourne metropolitan area or the Shire of Mitchell but are on holidays elsewhere, you may continue that holiday. We are currently reviewing operating plans post 12 July following the imposition of restrictions yesterday by the State Government. We expect to announce the revised plan on Friday 10 July 2020. In the meantime ski area operations will continue this week, following all COVID-19 safety guidelines.” A resort statement said.