COVID-19 outbreak in Australia claims 13 lives, 774 fresh cases reported

Sydney, Australia, Jul 30 (efe-epa).- Australian authorities on Thursday said 13 people died due to COVID-19, while 744 fresh cases were detected in the country, making it the highest death toll and number of infection in a day.

The state of Victoria – with the second highest population in the country – which has imposed a lockdown until Aug. 19 in the city of Melbourne, reported 723 new COVID-19 cases and 13 deaths.

The states of New South Wales and Queensland on Thursday reported 18 and 3 COVID-19 cases, respectively.

Victoria Premier Daniel Andrews, in a press conference on Thursday said the figures were not unexpected due to the high number of infections in the old age homes, which makes up a total of 900 cases, including the residents and the workers along with infections in the workplaces.

“The community transmission, the kind of mystery cases, that’s still too high,” said Andrews, whose administration was expecting to flatten the COVID-19 curve after reporting 295 infections the previous day.

Due to the increase in the number of cases outside of Melbourne – which completed its third week in lockdown – Andrews announced stricter restriction measures in six jurisdictions of the state as well as mandatory use of masks across the city from Monday onward.

So far, it’s not known if the lockdown in Melbourne and rural area, Mitchell – some 77 kilometers from the city – will be extended.

Andrews further said nothing can be predicted about the status three weeks from now.

Australia has registered 16,300 cases so far, of which 10,000 have been reported in Victoria, and 189 deaths since the beginning of the pandemic.

Australia, which managed the first wave of the pandemic successfully, is now facing a second-wave of the infections which possibly started following the arrival of infected people from abroad. EFE-EPA


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