Metropolitan Melbourne in Australia will go into stage three lockdown for six weeks from 11.59pm on Wednesday as the state recorded 191 new cases of coronavirus since Monday, the highest daily increase since the pandemic began.
The Victorian premier, Daniel Andrews, announced that people living in the Melbourne metropolitan area and the Mitchell Shire area would again be subject to restrictions meaning they can only leave their house for work, education, exercise, for necessary goods or services or for medical or compassionate reasons until 11.59pm on Wednesday August 19.
Andrews cited the rapid rise in cases in Melbourne and said it was unsustainable to keep the current restrictions in place.
“These are unsustainably high numbers of new cases. It is simply impossible with case rates at this level to have enough contact tracing staff, to have enough physical resources no matter where they come from, no matter what uniform they wear, in order to continue to suppress and contain this virus without taking significant steps,” he said.
“If we were to fail to take those steps, then it won’t be a couple of hundred cases per day, it will be many more than that and will spiral well and truly out of control.”
Of the new cases, 37 are linked to outbreaks and 154 are under investigation. No cases have been detected in a returned travellers in hotel quarantine. There are now 772 active cases in Victoria, and 438 cases may indicate community transmission has occurred. There are 35 people in hospital, including nine in intensive care.