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11th case confirmed, prison visits banned

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The state government has announced a temporary ban on personal visits to prisoners, in an effort to curb the spread of coronavirus.

It comes after Tasmania's 11th case of the disease was confirmed, a woman whom arrived from the UK on Wednesday, now in isolation at home in the south of the state.

Another Tasmanian - a woman in her 50s - has the condition and is being treated in Sydney after disembarking from the Ruby Princess cruise ship on Thursday.

There were 54 other Tasmanian passengers on board the vessel who have all had been contacted and informed of they must self-quarantine once they reach their destination.

Premier Peter Gutwein said he doesn't take the decision to ban jail visits lightly.

"The TPS will increase telephone access for prisoners where possible and appropriate, and put extra resources into alternative communication measures, such as video calls, to ensure that prisoners can continue to connect with their families and friends."  

The Premier also delivered a frank message to Tasmanians generally.

"If you don't need to go out, don't. Don't put the health and safety of other people at risk. Be cautious, be responsible and importantly, abide by the rules because the penalties will apply and they will be substantial."

Failure to self-isolate once ordered can attract a fine of up to $16,500 or six months prison.

 Image: Pixabay