Virus numbers climb


Ewen McRae

By Ewen McRae

Melton is among the worst affected regions in Melbourne battling COVID-19.

The Melton municipality had 211 active cases of the virus as of Sunday, the first time the municipality has broken the 200 barrier.

It marks a disturbing climb in the community, with 87 new cases in the past week. At the end of June there were just 13 cases of the virus in Melton.

Despite being outside of the lockdown region of metropolitan Melbourne, Moorabool has also seen a sharp rise in cases, with nine cases of the virus now active in the shire.

All of those cases have been detected since the lockdown came into place.

It comes as Victoria recorded it’s deadliest day on Sunday with 10 people dying from coronavirus and another 437 cases detected.

The number of active cases in Victoria was more than 8100 on Sunday.

The state’s chief health officer professor Brett Sutton said the tough lockdown measures in place, and the mandatory wearing of face coverings in metropolitan Melbourne and Mitchell shire, were essential to curtail the virus, and urged the public to continue adhering to the rules.

“These restrictions are necessary because of the sharp increase in cases,” professor Sutton said.

“If you live in these areas, there are only four reasons to leave your home: shopping for food and essential items; care and caregiving; daily exercise; and work and study – if you can’t do it from home.

“These are tough measures, but this virus is not selective – it will impact anyone it encounters, and personal contact is the clear source of its transmission. We need everyone to do their part and ensure it is stopped in its tracks.”

Nearby local government areas Wyndham and Brimbank have the highest number of cases of the virus in the state, with 515 active cases in Brimbank and 476 in Wyndham.

More than 1500 cases of the virus have been detected in those two municipalities since the pandemic began.