Queensland records 16 local COVID-19 cases as Deputy Premier flags ‘positive development’

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Queensland has recorded another 16 locally acquired coronavirus cases as the state’s south east aims to emerge from lockdown in four days’ time.

All cases have been linked to the Delta cluster centred in Brisbane’s western suburbs which now numbers at least 79 cases – something Deputy Premier Steven Miles said was “encouraging news”.

Of those cases, three are students at Ironside State School, nine are household contacts linked to the school, and four cases are linked to Brisbane Grammar including a teacher, two students and a household contact.

“Only three were infectious in the community for one day and one was infectious for two days,” Miles told reporters on Thursday.

“The other 12 were in quarantine throughout the entire infectious period so the fact they are all linked and mostly were in quarantine is a positive development as well.”

Queensland Deputy Premier Steven Miles during a press conference. Credit: JASON O’BRIEN/AAPIMAGE

Miles said Queenslanders “outdid themselves again” with 52,351 tests processed in the 24 hour period, a testing record.

Eleven other cases are overseas acquired and have been recorded onboard a ship anchored off Gladstone. Most of the crew are vaccinated and those infected are being cared for onboard.

On Wednesday, Miles said the outbreak had already become the state’s biggest since the first wave in 2020.

Earlier this week Chief Health Officer Dr Jeannette Young warned Queenslanders will need to do something “really, really, really special” in order to see the lockdown end as planned on Sunday.

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Young said a comparison with other states and “how long it’s taken before they could lift their restrictions”, made it clear Queensland still faced a “big challenge”.

“If we don’t do something really, really, really special in Queensland, we’ll be extending the lockdown,” she said, “so, please, I ask of all of you – try your absolute hardest to stay at home if you possibly can.”

A cyclist travels along Southbank as Brisbane wakes to snap lockdown.
A cyclist travels along Southbank as Brisbane wakes to snap lockdown. Credit: Jono Searle/Getty Images

Health authorities are still unsure how the initial family of five who became infected in western Brisbane are linked to two index cases who arrived from overseas in late June.

Millions of residents across Brisbane, Gold Coast, Ipswich, Lockyer Valley, Logan, Moreton Bay, Noosa, Redland, Scenic Rim, Somerset and the Sunshine Coast will remain in lockdown until at least 4pm on Sunday.

– with AAP

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