A lockdown in Sydney, Australia, looks likely to be extended.

Officials in Sydney, Australia, warned on Monday that town’s lockdown might be prolonged as an outbreak of the extremely contagious Delta variant of the coronavirus confirmed no indicators of slowing down.

The metropolis, Australia’s most populous, entered lockdown greater than two weeks in the past after an airport limousine driver contracted the virus, which then unfold quickly. On Monday, officers reported 112 new circumstances, the very best one-day whole but in an outbreak that has grown to 678 circumstances because it started in mid-June.

“We are at an absolutely critical phase of this disease,” stated Gladys Berejiklian, premier of the state of New South Wales, which incorporates Sydney.

Although Ms. Berejiklian didn’t say whether or not the lockdown would be lifted on Friday as scheduled, she harassed that it was contingent on minimizing the quantity of people that have been shifting about whereas infectious.

“All of us want to get out of this lockdown,” Ms. Berejiklian stated. “It’s up to all of us to see that number of exposures in the community go down.”

Though Australia has been comparatively profitable in managing the virus by strict border closures and speak to tracing, solely about 9 p.c of the nation’s inhabitants is absolutely vaccinated, and the fast unfold of the Delta variant is a serious concern. Studies counsel that vaccines stay efficient in opposition to the Delta variant.

On Monday, citing the outbreak, Sydney officers stated that the AstraZeneca vaccine would be made out there to folks as younger as 40. That is a break from nationwide well being steering, which recommends the AstraZeneca pictures just for these over 60 due to blood clotting issues. For youthful folks, the steering is to use the Pfizer vaccine.