Sixteen new local Victorian cases all linked to current outbreaks

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Victoria recorded 16 new local cases on Sunday after the health department declared new exposure sites at two Melbourne CBD bars and a number of bus lines across Bacchus Marsh.

The locally acquired cases are all linked to the current outbreaks, the Department of Health confirmed on Twitter.

Two additional cases were announced in returned travellers in hotel quarantine on Sunday.

There were more than 53,000 test results returned on Saturday and 16,761 vaccine doses administered. Victoria now has 70 active cases.

Health authorities have identified 217 potential COVID-19 exposure sites listed across Victoria up to 9.30am on Sunday.

Popular CBD hospitality venues the Emerald Peacock on Lonsdale Street and Cookie on Swanston Street are some of the latest tier 1 exposure sites listed by the Department of Health overnight.

A positive case visited the Emerald Peacock on Thursday between 6pm and 7pm, while Cookie has been listed as an exposure site between 6.30pm and 11.45pm on Thursday.

Both bars are tier 1 sites, meaning patrons who visited during those times need to isolate for 14 days and promptly get a COVID test.

The new hospitality exposures come after health authorities spent Saturday night contacting soccer fans who watched the Euro 2020 final at CBD pub the Crafty Squire on Monday morning, with patrons now required to isolate for 14 days.

A number of Christian’s school bus journeys in Bacchus Marsh, 50 kilometres north west of Melbourne, have also been listed as tier 1 exposure sites.

Exposure sites on Thursday include Ballan/Greendale to Bacchus Marsh via Hallets Way service between 8.10am and 8.30am, Bacchus Marsh College to Bacchus Marsh Grammar service between 8.20am and 8.40am, and the Bacchus Marsh to Ballan/Greendale service between 3pm and 4pm.

The Bacchus Marsh College Bus Interchange has also been listed as a tier 1 exposure site on Thursday between 8.21am and 8.41am.

Health authorities confirmed that among the 19 new COVID-19 cases announced on Saturday, three were connected to Bacchus Marsh Grammar, with two staff members and a student testing positive.

Rugby fans who watched Wallabies versus France match at AAMI Stadium on Tuesday and entered via gate 7 between 7.56pm and 8.13pm have been warned they must now isolate for 14 days as it is a tier 1 exposure site.

Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton said on Saturday that the significant number of exposure sites listed mean Victorians needed to “brace ourselves for any possibility”.

Eighteen of yesterday’s cases were infectious in the community, for an average of 1.7 days.

There are also now after increasing concerns from health authorities about the risk the Delta variant poses to younger people, particularly with a slow vaccine rollout restricting their access to the jab.

More than 60 per cent of COVID-19 cases in Victoria are aged under 40, with those infected unlikely to be vaccinated, according to a government source who spoke on the condition of anonymity. Of the 54 active cases in Victoria, which include 11 infections acquired overseas, 33 people are aged in their 30s or younger.

With Paul Sakkal, Tom Cowie, James Massola and Erin Pearson

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