Sydney residents will be blocked for another week as Australia’s largest city fights to contain the Covid outbreak.
The Government of New South Wales said it had made a “difficult decision” to fight the highly infectious Delta strain.
A stay-at-home order was issued on June 26th.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, Australia has recorded 910 deaths and less than 31,000 cases.
Clusters emerged after some people who later turned out to be infected left home for necessities.
About 330 outbreaks are the worst in the city this year.
The stay-at-home order for more than 5 million residents in the Greater Sydney, Wollongong and Central Coast areas was scheduled to be lifted on Friday. It is currently extended until July 16th. The school will be closed next week.
The Government of New South Wales said it was aware of the “pain and stress” that the blockade was causing families and businesses.
Still, officials said the daily case rate and low levels of vaccination, with 27 new cases recorded on Wednesday, meant that restrictions needed to be increased.
Less than 10% of Australians are fully vaccinated. In particular, the lack of supply of Pfizer vaccine means that many Australians will not be able to get jabs until the last few months of the year.
“What we want to do is give the best chance to ensure that this is the only blockade until the majority of citizens are vaccinated,” Gladys Berejikrian said Wednesday.
“We don’t want to be in a situation where we have to constantly move between blockade and no blockade.”
Australia fights delta stocks
The incident is widespread throughout the country, but Sydney was hit hardest by the recent outbreak of Australia’s Delta subspecies.
A virus leak from a hotel quarantine last week prompted a sudden blockade of state capitals, including Brisbane, Darwin and Perth, affecting half of the country’s population.
Authorities in these cities were able to contain the virus and ended the blockade last week.
Australia used blockades and rapid contact tracing to combat the outbreak of the virus in the event of a breach of the country’s strict border defenses.