Most school and university students in Melbourne will go back to online learning from midnight Wednesday, just weeks after returning to their classrooms, while weddings will also be banned.
The sweeping new measures follow a city-wide lockdown that began in early July but has failed to curb the spread of the virus, with Andrews blaming the continuing rise in cases on people flouting stay-at-home orders.
Months, and months and months
"These are the decisions made because anything short of this will not keep us safe," Andrews said, adding anything less "will see it drag on for months and months and months".
Additional restrictions affecting workplaces would be announced Monday, Andrews added, suggesting that non-essential businesses will face closures.
Victoria accounts for the vast majority of active coronavirus cases in Australia, recording 671 new cases and seven deaths from the virus Sunday.
Health authorities have linked the resurgence to security bungles at hotels used to quarantine international travelers that allowed the virus to leak back into the community.
The state's chief health officer, Brett Sutton, said an estimated 20,000 cases were averted during Stage 3 restrictions, but flattening the curve to hundreds of new cases a day was "intolerable".
"We need to see those numbers through the eyes of our healthcare workers and the kind of awful fear that they have about what it means for people presenting to hospital," he said.