Neighbours filming halts amid COVID-19
As social distancing measures are rolled out across Australia, filming of beloved Aussie soap Neighbours has been put on pause temporarily.
It is understood someone working on the show has come into contact with a person who has tested positive to coronavirus, prompting show runners to cease filming as a precautionary measure.
BREAKING: Obviously they didn’t have good neighbours.— Julian Abbott (@JulianBAbbott) March 18, 2020
Production has been temporarily halted on the set “Neighbours” due to a coronavirus scare.
A casual who works on the program came into contact with someone with COVID19 and the shut down is a precautionary measure.
A statement from Network 10 and Fremantle Media confirming the halt stressed that the health and wellbeing of the cast and crew was paramount.
"Neighbours has decided to take a short break this week to ensure the production model in place can withstand any potential impact of the current COVID-19 situation," the statement said.
"The health and wellbeing of everyone on the set of Neighbours will always be our priority."
According to 10 Daily, the program's jam-packed shooting schedule will be put on hold until next Monday.
Program bosses have assured fans the break won't affect the show's usual on-air schedule.
The news comes shortly after Channel 9 producers announced filming of the The Block will continue, business as usual.
Scott Cam and co-host Shelley Craft were seen shooting scenes alongside contestants for season 16 of the popular Channel 9 renovation show in Melbourne, today which normally goes to air in July or August.
In a statement released on nine.com.au, the show's executive producer and creator Julian Cress said construction was continuing but the site had been closed to anyone not essential to production.
Mr Cress stressed that The Block was an "economic entity" not just a construction site, employing many freelancers and "people who need to feed their children".
"We are going to follow all of the practices and all of the advice that has been given, we are practising social distancing … but for now, we want to continue," he told nine.com.au.
The show is being filmed in the bayside suburb of Brighton.
This morning, Prime Minister Scott Morrison banned indoor gatherings of more than 100, with outdoor events of 500 or less given the go-ahead.
As of this afternoon, 565 cases of coronavirus have been confirmed across Australia.