Business reels as major city to be slammed back into lockdown

Melbourne is to suffer yet another lockdown after 10 new cases have brought the city’s total up to 25. The 10 overnight cases are linked to the city’s north.

The NSW premier, Gladys Berejiklian, has said that the cases are of “enormous concern” to the NSW government. NSW health is doing its best to trace a cross-border sporting team that visited NSW.

Speaking on the TV show Sunrise this morning, Ms. Berejiklian said “The fact that 60 venues are now on the list of concern in Victoria is of enormous concern to us”.

The Victorian decision follows overnight cabinet sessions, and The Australian reports that the lockdown could last a full week. 

The outbreak appears to be genomically linked to a man who returned to Victoria at the beginning of this month, having caught the virus at a quarantine hotel in SA. Concerns are that the outbreak is the ‘Indian’ variant B.1.617 which may be up to 50% more transmissible than previous variants.

“The prediction of 50% more transmissible sounds entirely plausible,” says Sharon Peacock, a microbiologist at the University of Cambridge, UK.