COVID: NT records 11 new cases, with woman caught leaving lockdown area
There have been 11 new cases of COVID-19 recorded in the Northern Territory overnight, taking the cluster to a total of 51 cases.
One case is of key concern after four people defied lockdown orders by leaving Binjari and travelling to Katherine by taxi.
Police Commissioner Jamie Chalker says the woman, who was unaware she was infectious, was found in a public housing home on the Victoria Highway a short time ago.
“There’s now 11 people, those four plus the seven that were in that property all going to go into being close contacts,” he says.
They are all being taken to Howard Springs, with contact tracing underway to identify others who have potentially been exposed.
A taxi driver has also been caught up in the outbreak as well as a caravan park, which is where the group called the cab.
Commissioner Chalker says police are now working on contingency to further prevent people from leaving lockdown areas.
The woman is expected to be slapped with a $5,024 fine for breaching health directions.
Meanwhile, three children are also among today’s new cases.
They are from the same family in Katherine, and were in isolation.
The remaining seven cases are close contacts who were already at Howard Springs and are residents of Binjari and Robinson River.
The Katherine McDonalds has been upgraded to a close contact exposure site for November 13 between 11am and 11.25am.
Chief Minister Michael Gunner says it was McHappy Day and the restaurant was very busy at the time.
“Investigations have determined that there were four positive cases there at the same time making it very high-risk.”
“We need everyone who was there for McHappy Day at that time to make immediate contact if you haven’t already.”
Meanwhile the Katherine Centrelink office has been downgraded to a casual contact site on November 15 between 9.44am and 10.36am.
Mr Gunner says there will be more exposure sites to come, with people urged to monitor the NT’s Coronavirus website.
Fragments of the virus are still showing up in Katherine’s Bicentennial Road catchment.
Samples from Binjari are showing a weak positive result, with a presumptive positive detected in Berrimah.
Acting Chief Health Officer Doctor Charles Pain says the results are reassuring.
“It is positive where we would expect it and we have explanations for [the] Golf Course [catchment in Katherine]… and that’s turned negative.”
He is encouraging people in the Bicentennial Road catchment area to continue getting tested if they have any symptoms at all.
(Photos: Middle - Google Maps/ Max Buzz)