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Sydney has reached a critical point in its fight against Covid-19 if Victoria’s previous battle with the virus is any indication.
For it was around the five week mark when Melbourne finally started getting on top of its wretched horror second wave.
On Wednesday, NSW recorded 177 new Covid cases, with 2,574 cases reported since the Bondi outbreak in June.
Victoria was about to peak with its Covid cases after five weeks of lockdown.
August 2, 2020: Soldiers patrolled the streets of Melbourne as new lockdown restrictions kicked in
August 7 last year: Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews amid a full blown crisis with hundreds upon hundreds of new cases and deaths soaring with aged care homes
NSW Health has recorded 11 Covid-19 related deaths during the current outbreak.
In contrast, Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews placed Melburnians into stage three lockdown on July 9 last year as the state recorded 165 new cases, bringing the total then to 3098 with 22 dead.
It was supposed to last for just six weeks.
Victoria’s second deadly wave had also moved quickly across Melbourne in June last year.
A plan to lockdown several postcodes around Melbourne, including several housing commission blocks, had failed.
Ten days later, Victoria recorded 343 new cases in a single day, reaching 2837 active cases.
A state of disaster was declared on August 2 as 671 cases were recorded and seven deaths, taking the number of active cases to 6322.
But worse was still to come.
By August 5 new case numbers would peak with 725 recorded cases.
The panic button was pushed and metropolitan Melbourne was moved to stage-four lockdown, which saw travel restricted to within a 5km radius and a curfew from 8pm to 5am.
Melburnians scrambled to get their hair cut and shopping done in a last-minute rush.
Hairdressers, electrical and furniture shops, food courts and clothes shops all served their last customers for what they believed would last until at least mid September.
August 7: Melbourne was peaking with Covid cases a month into the crisis. The CBD had been reduced to a ghost town
Sydney’s past 34 days have seen Covid numbers climb to 177 new cases on Wednesday
In Victoria, cases soared over the same period last year into the 700s before falling under hard lockdown
Victoria attempted to stem the spread with isolated lockdowns, but by July 9 last year Premier Daniel Andrews locked down the entire city of Melbourne. And it would only get worse
The following day, Victoria recorded 471 new cases and eight more deaths.
A total of 7449 active cases remained with 575 Victorians in hospital with the virus – 42 of those in intensive care.
On August 12 – 34 days after the July 9 lockdown – 7877 cases were currently active in Victoria.
It had peaked at about the same spot Sydney finds itself in right now.
By then, the virus had swept through Victoria’s aged care homes, killing 181 people.
The premier extended Victoria’s state of emergency until August 16.
It was only then than Victoria began to drive down the numbers, but the damage had already been done.
While active cases dived in the community through September, the death toll continued to climb.
On October 1, 800 Victorians were recorded dead from the virus.
It took another 25 days for Victoria to record no new cases – the first time since June 9.
Mr Andrews announced the easing of restrictions and retail and hospitality were allowed to open up.
Melburnians had spent a whopping 112 days in lockdown and 820 lives had been lost.
Melburnians slowly returned to the CBD on Wednesday, with small numbers seen on the Bourke Street Mall
The Bourke Street Mall remained a shadow of its former self on Wednesday in Melbourne
Melbourne has been released from its fifth lockdown, but many wonder how long it is before the sixth begins
Mr Andrews crowed about killing the virus, but it would be back time and time again.
Last week, Mr Andrews sneered at NSW, claiming ‘Sydney is on fire with this virus’ while also calling for a ‘ring of steel around Sydney’.
‘I just remind you all we had a ring of steel around Melbourne last year and it didn’t just protect country Victoria, it protected the whole country,’ he said.
‘Avoiding a NSW-style long, lengthy, very challenging lockdown where we lose control of cases, we have avoided that.’
On this day last year, 83 people had died in Victoria after Covid-19 escaped from Mr Andrews’ bungled hotel quarantine scheme.
On Wednesday, Melburnians emerged from their fifth hard lockdown.
They were greeted with a cold and wet morning, which once again saw Melbourne’s CBD crawl back to life.
By midday, the sun was shining and Hardware Lane began to show signs of life along its once bustling cafe strip.
Five million residents in Greater Sydney – including the Central Coast, the Blue Mountains, Wollongong and Shellharbour – have spent nearly five weeks under strict home orders in a desperate attempt to slow the rate of transmission in the city.
The new extension will expire on Saturday, August 28 at 12.01am.
Source: DailyMail AU