A 31-year-old woman in Australia has been charged with arson after she set fire to the COVID-19 quarantine hotel in Australia’s Northern city of Cairns.
The unidentified woman lit the fire in the 11th-floor room where she was quarantined with her two children at the Pacific Hotel Cairns, according to New York Post reporting from Australia.
Acting Chief Superintendent Chris Hodgman said the woman was in custody and police were caring for her children.
“No one was injured in the blaze, but more than 160 people were forced to evacuate,” the Police Superintendent said.
“The woman had been in quarantine for a couple of days and there had been issues with her that authorities “were managing,” he added.
According to the New York Post, the incident is an example of tensions rising in parts of Australia due to COVID-19 restrictions and the latest concerns over the emergence of the Omicron variant, which was first detected in South Africa by scientists.
It’s unclear whether the variant causes more severe disease and the Australian government has banned foreign travellers from South Africa, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Lesotho, Eswatini, the Seychelles, Malawi and Mozambique.
Further, Australian citizens returning from those countries will be required to quarantine for 14 days in hotels.
Previously, quarantine rules applied to unvaccinated travellers entering the country.