UPDATE 6pm: Victoria Police and the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) will start escorting light vehicles from the Cann River roadblock towards Orbost.
UPDATE 5.45pm: Three V/Line scheduled coaches have been unable to proceed on the Princes Hwy for several hours, with two stationed at Orbost and one at Cann River.
The services affected are the Bairnsdale to Canberra, Bairnsdale to Batemans Bay, and Narooma to Bairnsdale coaches.
A spokewoman for V/Line said the transport company is working closely with Victoria Police to ensure the welfare of the passengers on board the services.
“V/Line will fully reimburse the passengers who travelled on these V/Line coaches today,” she said.
“We are looking at how these coach services will operate tomorrow and any changes will be communicated via the V/Line website and Gippsland line Twitter feed, as well as SMS notifications for passengers reserved on the service.”
UPDATE 5pm: The Princes Hwy is still closed between Cann River and Orbost as Victoria Police respond to a man with a shotgun at a hotel in East Gippsland.
It is believed the man is holed up alone inside the Bellbird Hotel.
The Critical Incident Response Team is on the scene and the incident is ongoing.
Coaches on V/Line’s Gippsland route are also being held until further notice.
Earlier: Police were notified that an armed man was inside the Bellbird Hotel on the Princes Hwy about 9.30am.
A woman attended the hotel and was confronted by a man of Asian appearance who was in possession of a firearm.
The man did not threaten her directly or make any specific demands.
The hotel was closed at the time. She left the hotel and reported the incident to police.
No one was injured during the incident.
There are no diversions in place on the Princes Hwy so police are asking that all non-essential travel be avoided at this time.
Updates as they occur.
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