Compliance with restrictions aimed at limiting the spread of novel coronavirus has been positive in the Bendigo area to date, police say.
Acting Senior Sergeant Brad Hyatt, co-ordinator of Victoria Police's COVID-19 operation for the Bendigo area, said police had conducted more than 20 checks on returned overseas travellers who were directed to be self-isolate.
He said police had found people were complying with those restrictions.
"It's good to see people are listening to the messaging and doing the right thing," Acting Senior Sergeant Hyatt said.
Businesses were also obeying the restrictions, he said, and those who were still allowed to operate were doing so within the rules.
"Business has been very good," Acting Senior Sergeant Hyatt said.
He said police had received anecdotal reports of people gathering in larger groups than allowed, but did not find breaches upon checking up on these reports.
Acting Senior Sergeant Hyatt urged the community to continue following the rules and not let up.
"Our preference is that we don't have to fine anyone," he said, but warned police would take action upon finding any breaches of the restrictions.
Under the new stage three restrictions that came into force overnight, individuals can be fined $1652 and businesses $9913 for flouting the rules.
Larger fines can be issued through the courts.
Victoria Police Deputy Commissioner Shane Patton said on Wednesday that police would also consider charging people with a known diagnosis of COVID-19 who breach the restrictions with criminal offences, such as conduct placing a person in danger of serious injury or death.
Acting Senior Sergeant Hyatt said the normal frontline police response was not affected at all by the operation, with police locally able to draw on existing resources to monitor compliance.
"There's been a really cohesive response here," he said.
The new restrictions mean people must stay home unless they have to leave, with Premier Daniel Andrews saying there are only four reasons to do so: food and supplies, medical care, exercise, and work or education.
No more than two people can gather at a time, except for members of one household, or for work or education.
There is now also a ban on the sale of ammunition and firearms to recreational and sporting shooters.
Deputy Commissioner Patton said there had been a run on the purchasing of ammunition and people seeking permits for firearms in the past week.
He said the number of people applying for permits had doubled in the past week compared to the previous week.
Deputy Commissioner Patton said the ban was aimed at stopping the unnecessary storage of firearms and ammunition.
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