The Informer: More than half of Australia now in lockdown

Yes, Victoria's back in lockdown, Premier Dan Andrews has announced.
Yes, Victoria's back in lockdown, Premier Dan Andrews has announced.

If a week's a long time in politics, how long's a day in a pandemic? Ask poor old Victoria.

Premier Daniel Andrews has just finished a press conference explaining just why the entire state will enter its sixth lockdown immediately.

Essentially it boiled down to: "The Delta variant moves at lightning speed."

And for a state that yesterday celebrated a "doughnut day" (however briefly it may have been) to now be in the midst of another lockdown is shattering.

"I would prefer we didn't have to make this decision now. But my fear is if we were to wait a few days and the advice to me from the experts is, if we were to wait even just a few days, there is every chance, instead of being locked down for a week, this gets away from us," Mr Andrews said.

He hoped the harsh restrictions would end after seven days, this was not something he could guarantee.

It comes as two new cases of coronavirus were detected on top of the six previously announced earlier this morning.

From 8pm tonight, more than 60 per cent of the Australian population will be in lockdown. Amomg them now the people of Newcastle in NSW.

The people of NSW's Hunter region suspected a lockdown was on its way and today it came.

The region will lock down for a week, Premier Gladys Berejiklian announced, bringing the region into the umbrella of "the toughest lockdown restrictions anywhere in Australia" in force for greater Sydney and the Central Coast.

Five people with COVID-19 are being cared for in the Hunter and further investigations are underway, but authorities believe the source of infection was a Lake Macquarie gathering.

"We now think that the source extended from a gathering on Blacksmiths beach on Friday night," Dr Chant said.

Which is probably why the Victorian Premier is ever-so politely encouraging people this afternoon to go home and stay home.

On the good news front (remember good news?), authorities are increasingly confident southeast Queensland will emerge from an eight-day lockdown on Sunday amid the state's worst COVID-19 outbreak in a year.

That's something, huh? Isn't it?

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This story More than half of Australia now in lockdown first appeared on The Canberra Times.