In the rise of coronavirus cases, Melbourne is coming back

Workers on personal protective equipment were seen, alongside side police patrols, on July 7 in Melbourne, Australia. Daniel Pockett / Getty Images

The Australian city of Melbourne is returning to a 3-week pace in six weeks as it fights the rush in coronavirus cases, Victoria Prime Minister Daniel Andrews announced today.

Locking will begin at 11:59 p.m. Wednesday local time.

People will only be allowed to leave their homes to buy food, go to work, receive or give care and exercise, Andrews said.

Elsewhere in the state of Victoria, the Mitchell Shire region will also be locked for six weeks.

Companies like restaurants that have opened will now be forced to close again, the prime minister said.

“We know we’re at the peak of something very bad if we’re not above that,” Andrews said. “Alternatively, pretend it’s over, as I think some Victorians do.”

House towers: As of Saturday, 3,000 residents of nine public towers in Melbourne have been under “strong lock,” meaning they can’t leave at all. All residents are now being tested, along with meals and other necessities provided by the government.

As Melbourne goes through a Phase 3 lock – softer restrictions than a “hard lock” – tower residents will be allowed to go outside for basic activities.

Earlier today, Victoria’s health department announced it had recorded 191 new cases on Monday – the biggest daily jump to date.

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