Closures are under consideration in parts of regional New South Wales as the virus stabilizes in the west, but continues to spread further south.
- Lockdown restrictions are under consideration in four regions of the West New South Wales council
- Cases continue to spread in the Hilltops area, with the source of the first case remaining unknown
- Surveillance tests are extended to all cities in the west-central state
The number of cases in the local health district of West New South Wales remained relatively stable, with seven more people contracting the virus.
Of these, four cases were in Dubbo and one in Walgett, Mudgee and Cowra.
The Cowra Shire Council has entered its first full day of lockdown after a nine-year-old boy was contagious in the community and at school for two days.
Today’s new case is a relative of the boy, who attends Cowra Public School, which has been closed to allow testing and cleaning.
Inclined locking extension for Hilltops
It’s a different picture in the south of the state.
In the South New South Wales Local Health District, nine cases have been detected in the past 24 hours; three in Goulburn and Yass, two in Queanbeyan and one in Upper Lachlan Shire which is still under investigation.
Concerns remain for Murrumbidgee LHD, where five people tested positive overnight, including a woman in her 40s and three children who are household contacts of a previously reported case.
The other is a teenager.
Almost half of LHD cases are in children between the ages of two and 18.
Last Friday, the Hilltops Council in the Southern Tablelands returned to lockdown after a case was first identified in the current outbreak in Young.
The local government area, which also includes Harden-Murrumburrah, has recorded a total of 12 cases so far.
Mayor Brian Ingram said he expects stay-at-home orders to be extended by at least a week as the number of cases continues to rise and the source of the original infection remains under investigation .
“They got out of containment in town and you couldn’t move, it was buzzing.”
Cr Ingram encouraged residents to continue getting vaccinated to ensure the community was protected if the virus spreads further.
Detections of virus fragments in Griffith’s sewage have worried authorities as there are no known cases in this area.
Upper House MP Sam Farraway said a decision on which local government areas would be released from lockdown was due to be announced on Thursday.
The reopening of Orange, Narromine, Gilgandra and Brewarrina Shire city councils will be discussed at a crisis cabinet meeting as regions approach the 14-day mark with zero new cases.
The decision to relax the restrictions is based on the risk factor of any recent case.
Dubbo’s member state Dugald Saunders said the situation “could change overnight”.
From tomorrow, surveillance tests through LHD will be available in every city, meaning people without symptoms are not required to self-isolate while awaiting test results.
The number of tests has increased since the program was introduced.
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