Pub virus infection off the charts
A young man who caught coronavirus at the Crossroads Hotel in Casula had "one of the highest infection levels we've ever seen", NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard has revealed.
"We've got a young bloke from that latest cluster … he had one of the highest infection levels we've ever seen," Mr Hazzard told Ben Fordham on 2GB.
"His viral load was quite capable of spreading it to anybody near him … we all need to be on high alert."
Mr Hazzard said the information should serve as a dire warning to young people, who make up 40 per cent of coronavirus cases, that the virus was "extremely dangerous".
Younger people rarely experience life-threatening symptoms but are proving to be more infectious than older people.
"I've been talking to the health tracers, and they tell me young people get out and about in the evening and they go a lot of places," he said.
"They can be super spreaders with great skill and acumen."
There have been 34 cases in New South Wales linked to the outbreak at the Sydney pub, with new cases popping up all over the state daily.
In response, the NSW Government has tightened restrictions around pubs, lowering the gathering limit from 20 to 10, and promised to crack down on businesses that don't have a COVID-safe plan or are not following it.
"This virus is still out and about," Mr Hazard said.
"As I said to someone yesterday, it's a very speedy virus, it could win a gold medal at the Olympics. Until we can get a vaccine, there's no way we're out of the woods."
The Crossroads cluster is believed to have stemmed from a Melbourne man who worked for a freight company and was visiting an office in Sydney.
Health tracers say he and several of his colleagues went to the pub for a work party on July 3, leading to an outbreak that has since spread across Sydney to more than 20 businesses from Highfields in Caringbah to Macarthur Tavern in Campbelltown.
Originally published as Pub virus infection off the charts