FOUR Macedon Ranges Shire residents have tested positive for COVID-19 in the past week, bringing the region’s total to five active cases.
Two new cases of the virus were reported in Macedon Ranges by the Department of Health and Human Services on Wednesday, one on Saturday and one yesterday.
The shire has a total of 14 cases since the pandemic began.
Macedon Ranges remains well behind its neighbour Hume City, who, as of yesterday afternoon had 286 active cases.
Macedon Ranges’ eastern neighbour, Mitchell Shire, had 13 active cases.
Police in the Macedon Ranges police service area have reported receiving tipoffs from members of the public regarding breaches of lockdown restrictions.
Kyneton police have booked several drivers breaking the speed limit while patrolling near tourist areas looking for public health breaches.
People can book an appointment to be tested for COVID-19 at Kyneton Health’s clinic by calling 5422 9900.
People can also call the coronavirus hotline on 1800 675 398 for more information on how to get tested.
While residents of metropolitan Melbourne and Mitchell Shire will be required to wear face masks or coverings in public from 11.59pm on Wednesday or risk a $200 fine, people outside Victoria’s lockdown zone will not be compelled to do the same.
But Premier Daniel Andrews strongly advised Victorians in regional and rural areas – including Macedon Ranges – to wear face masks as a precaution.
“It should be seen just as a precautionary measure that’s pretty low cost, but very high benefit,” he said.
“But I wouldn’t want anyone to read that advice as being kind of the forerunner to a different set of rules.”
Macedon Ranges Shire chief executive Margot Stork said council understands Department of Health and Human Services monitors the requirements in regard to the availability of public testing locations in the shire and would adjust if necessary.
“It is important to note some general practitioners also have capability to undertake testing,” she said.
“Council encourages residents to follow DHHS advice for those living outside the lockdown area, which encourages them to wear a face covering when leaving home and if you are not able to keep 1.5 metres from others.
“The DHHS has also advised residents outside the lockdown area that if they need to travel into metropolitan Melbourne or Mitchell Shire then they must wear a face covering.
“The health and wellbeing of staff, residents and visitors is council’s top priority.
“We have taken a proactive approach to managing the risk to the organisation and our community, and have reopened any facilities in a responsible and coordinated way and with appropriate modifications and safeguards in place.”