Shepparton outbreak linked to Kilmore cluster


By Jackson Russell

Shepparton’s three active COVID-19 cases have been officially linked to the Kilmore and Chadstone outbreaks.

The three cases are among seven new cases in Victoria today.

Premier Daniel Andrews confirmed the same Melbourne man who had visited Kilmore and Benalla on September 30, leading to the five active cases in Mitchell Shire, also visited Shepparton the same day where three employees at a tyre shop are now infected.

When interviewed by contact tracers on the back of the Kilmore outbreak, the man failed to disclose his activities in Shepparton.

The seven new cases brings Victoria’s total of active cases to 182 and the 14-day rolling average to 0.6 in regional Victoria and 9.6 in Melbourne.

Regional Victoria now has eight active cases, with five in Mitchell Shire and three in Shepparton.

Mr Andrews said the Melbourne truck driver had now been referred to Victoria Police.

“This matter has been referred to Victoria Police, they’re the ones that make judgements about who should be fined,” he said.

“I just want to be clear with people. You don’t get in trouble if you tell the full story. You potentially do get into trouble if you don’t.

“By trouble, I’m not just talking about a fine, but there are infections in Shepparton today that we know of, and there’s almost certainly going to be more, that were all completely preventable if this individual had told the full story.”

Chief health officer Professor Brett Sutton said there was no reason to not tell contact tracers the truth.

“The reality is, if there’s another cluster that emerges and someone says ‘I saw X, Y and Z’, you will be found out,” he said.

“There’s no reason not to tell absolutely every truthful element about where you’ve been, whether or not you’ve been working on particular days and where, and all of your close contacts.

“If there is any doubt about the full account people are giving, there are powers in the Public Health and Wellbeing Act for me to demand information for the purposes of assessing a public health risk.”