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Pizza shop worker's lie sparks COVID lockdown in Australia

A lying pizza joint employee forced 1.7 million people into lockdown

"This is an extraordinary response and for that I'm very grateful", he said.

Chief Public Health Officer Nicola Spurrier said that had it not been for the quick thinking of a young doctor who tested the first case, the outbreak may not have been known for weeks.

The pizza shop in Adelaide's north has been under police guard since Premier Steven Marshall made the shock revelations about the worker's lie on Friday.

"There has to be consequences. we do not want this behaviour".

"Everybody receives an SMS message to be told that you are a close contact and you must go into quarantine and get tested, but of course we want to follow that up and speak to people directly", she said.

Sculptures of pigs are displayed in a almost empty pedestrian mall in Adelaide, Australia, Thursday, Nov. 19, 2020. The new case is the partner of an existing case, who is already in quarantine.

After seven months of no community transmission, the renewed outbreak in the north of the capital city, Adelaide, spurred the strict lockdown, as a cluster eventually grew to 25 infections.

"One of the close contacts linked to the Woodville Pizza Bar deliberately misled our contact tracing team. we now know that they lied", state premier Steve Marshall said in a press conference.

Premier Steven Marshall indicated a tough lockdown for the state's nearly two million people would end late today, at least two days earlier than planned.

The South Australian government has defended its decision to send residents into a hard lockdown despite low case numbers over the past few days. After that two-day period, on Saturday, a permit system will be instated.

Logically if the Covid-19 virus was so widespread at the pizza shop then it would have infected other staff members at the shop but authorities seemed to have formed their opinion based on one lie.

"This was ... way earlier than people clicked to things in Victoria, earlier than the Crossroads Hotel cluster and the subsequent seeding in NSW", she said.

"To say that I'm fuming about the actions of this individual is an absolute understatement", he added.

But he said the state was "not out of the woods yet". I stress this point, that this is still a very unsafe cluster and our expert health - our health experts remain extremely concerned.

However, Mr Marshall added that the threat to his state from the cluster of cases has not passed.

"And now seeing the NT and Victoria ease their own borders to South Australia, why can't Queensland do the same?"