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A man aged in his 30s has died of coronavirus, with Victoria has recording 12 deaths and another 466 new cases of COVID-19 overnight.

Among the dead are two men aged in their 70s, two men and three women in their 80s, and four women in their 90s, with six of those linked to aged care settings.

Twenty-nine Victorians are on ventilators, as 44 battle for life in intensive care.

And community transmissions are on the rise, with 130 new "mystery cases" overnight.

Victoria has recorded 7808 active cases, with about 7100 in metropolitan Melbourne and700 in regional Victoria.

Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton said numbers in Victoria's second wave were stablising, but the effects of stage four lockdowns were yet to be seen.

"Certainly we are seeing some stabilisation in numbers. We are 400 to 500 cases each day, more or less the average over the last week," he said.

"That is not good enough, but it's a positive that we have averted an exponential increase through the last couple of weeks.

 

"If we hadn't stabilised these numbers, we would have seen thousands of cases per day and there are estimates that we've averted 20,000 or more cases by virtue of the stage three restrictions ... Stage four restrictions will make a difference but we won't see them for another week or more."

It comes as dozens of people were sprung disobeying Melbourne's nightly curfew on Friday.

Victoria Police issued a total of 197 fines to people breaching lockdown restrictions in the past 24 hours.

Thirty-nine people were fined for not wearing a mask, 62 people were fined for curfew breaches and six people were fined at vehicle checkpoints.

Among those fined was a man on a city-bound train more than 5km from home who told police he needed to "get some fresh air".

Another man who was found at a service station at 1am without a mask told police he needed cigarettes and lollies.

Traffic on the Tullamrine Freeway this week. Picture: Andrew Henshaw
Traffic on the Tullamrine Freeway this week. Picture: Andrew Henshaw

FLIGHT BAN EXTENDED, HOTEL QUARANTINE REMAINS CLOSED

International flights to Melbourne have been suspended until October 24, meaning the state's problem-plagued hotel quarantine system is effectively closed.

The decision was made at Friday's national cabinet meeting as caps on overseas arrivals were locked in for each capital city.

It comes as Victorian Opposition Leader Michael O'Brien has applied for leave to appear before the state's hotel quarantine inquiry.

It is understood a high-powered legal team has already been engaged to act for Mr O'Brien, who will appear as himself on behalf of the Liberal Party.

The inquiry has requested further submissions before chair Jennifer Coate makes a decision.

Counsel assisting Tony Neal, QC, has flagged evidence already available to the inquiry suggested a link between many of the cases of coronavirus identified in Victoria's second wave and the bungled quarantine program.

Shadow Attorney-General Ed O'Donohue said the failed program was the largest public policy failure in Victoria's history.

"While the Andrews Labor Government is spending millions on lawyers to protect itself, it's vital that an external and alternative perspective is at the table and can be heard. With lives lost, the economy ruined and unprecedented restrictions on personal freedom, Victorians deserve the truth about how this went so wrong," he said.

Federal Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said on Friday that he was "devastated" by the crisis and that Daniel Andrews needed to explain the "significant failures" and the "mistakes made".

Mr O'Donohue said anything less than full transparency and accountability would be seen by the community as a whitewash.

The first witnesses were to testify before the inquiry this week, but the hearing was delayed because of stage four restrictions.

Ms Coate said many documents filed to the inquiry had also been submitted late, with broad claims for confidentiality which would take time to assess.

It is understood serious concerns have been raised about documents filed by the Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions, which was central to establishing the quarantine program.

Rydges Hotel in Carlton was used to quarantine returned travellers. Picture: Wayne Taylor
Rydges Hotel in Carlton was used to quarantine returned travellers. Picture: Wayne Taylor

FEARS FOR NURSES AMID PPE SHORTAGE

Victoria is facing a dangerous shortage of protective equipment needed in the fight against coronavirus prompting calls for urgent state government action.

A damning new survey has found one in five registered nurses did not have new and appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) available to them each shift.

The report by the Australian College of Nursing, Australia's peak nursing organisation, followed a survey of 750 nurses from Victoria's public and private hospitals.

It revealed many nurses were feeling frightened and vulnerable.

"There's a real scare factor among nurses being worried about taking the virus home to their families," The Australian College of Nursing chief executive Kylie Ward said.

"When you've got hundreds and hundreds of nurses being sent home in isolation or contracting the virus it's a major issue. It's alarming. No clinician should contract an infectious disease.

"There should be enough protection in place."

Read the full story here .

 

 

 

 

KMART WAREHOUSE STAFF STOP WORK

A coronavirus case at a Kmart distribution centre in Melbourne's west has prompted dozens of staff members to stop work.

A casual worker from a labour hire firm tested positive after working at the Truganina site, which is owned by Logistics company Toll.

The warehouse was closed down on Thursday and cleaned before being reopened on Friday.

However multiple workers were unhappy with the safety protocols in place and walked off the job on Friday.

United Workers Union Logistics Director Matt Toner said staff were not given information on which department the infected employee was working in.

Mr Toner said the level of contract tracing at the site was "disturbingly inadequate".

The concerns led to 50 workers walking off the job, Mr Toner said.

A lone walker along the Yarra River during the stage four lockdown. Picture: NCA NewsWire / David Crosling
A lone walker along the Yarra River during the stage four lockdown. Picture: NCA NewsWire / David Crosling

"Shockingly, Toll has refused to consult with health and safety representatives," he said.

"They have left their workforce in the dark, refusing to answer questions about the latest case."

A Toll spokeswoman said the worker who contracted coronavirus was last at the facility last Friday July 31.

"We have completed close contact tracing and a small number of potential workplace close contacts are self-isolating and getting tested as a precautionary measure," the spokeswoman said.

"An infectious clean of the facility has been undertaken."

She added that employees and their families were being offered every possible support.

- Josh Fagan

 

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Originally published as Man in 30s among Victoria's latest coronavirus deaths



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