THURSDAY, MARCH 5
The coronavirus has tightened its grip around the world with a second elderly woman dying at a Sydney nursing home, all sporting events in Italy set to take place in empty stadiums, and a seven month delay in the release of the new James Bond film.
And in a lighter incident allegedly adding to our problems, a semi-trailer carrying hundreds of rolls of toilet paper caught fire in Brisbane overnight.
The B-double semi-trailer caught fire on the north-bound lane of the Gateway Bridge just before 10:00pm requiring two fire crews to extinguish it.
There are now more than 50 recorded cases of coronavirus in Australia, many of whom will have recovered by now.
Doctors say they are resorting to shopping at Bunnings to buy face masks to guard against coronavirus because too few government supplies are getting to clinics and traditional stockists have sold out.
“We would rather that healthcare facilities had healthcare-standard masks and that we don’t have to resort to workarounds,” Royal Australian College of GPs president Harry Nespolon said.
In late January, the Government authorised the release of a million masks from the national medical stockpile, to be distributed to doctors and health workers via local primary health networks.
But several GPs have told the ABC it has still been very difficult to get the masks.
Meanwhile, the Australian Dental Association (ADA) says masks at many dental practices are expected to run out within four weeks due to the demand.
A 95-year-old resident at the Dorothy Henderson Lounge in Sydney’s north died on Tuesday in hospital.
It is Australia’s second death related to coronavirus.
The woman who died had had contact with an aged-care worker who contracted coronavirus despite not travelling overseas.
The worldwide release of the upcoming James Bond film is delayed until November amid the coronavirus outbreak.
No Time To Die, the last in the series to star Daniel Craig as the famous British secret agent, was due in cinemas in early April but MGM and Universal studios said “after careful consideration” the release will be postponed by seven months.
A statement released made no immediate mention of coronavirus but said the decision was made after “thorough evaluation of the global theatre marketplace”.
A good news story at last. ABC Radio is reporting that a Canberra bus driver has come to the rescue of a boy who ended up on the wrong route, dropping him home to his anxious parents.
Jeet Gill had finished his shift and reached his final stop when a young boy walked forward to the front of the bus.
“He said: ‘Oh, sorry I think I got the wrong bus’,” Mr Gill said.
“I knew what I had to do.”
But, before making any decisions, Mr Gill followed Transport Canberra protocol, calling the communications department to get approval to drive the boy home.
“They said ‘it would be really nice [to do that]’,” he said.
Mr Gill said, even though he had knocked off for the day, he did not have to think twice about making sure the boy got home safely.
“I just thought ‘what would happen if that was my kid?’ and that’s how I dealt with it,” he said.
“When I saw him, and looked at his eyes, I saw my son. So straight away I said ‘no problem’.
“I just did what was my job.”
The pair made it to the boy’s house just as his parents were about to call the police, after becoming worried when he did not come home at the time he would have if he had caught his usual bus.
The boy’s father told Transport Canberra it turned out that his son had switched to the wrong bus at the interchange, taking him on a route to the other side of town.
“That bus driver went above and beyond and I hope he gets thanked.”
The outback town of Thargomindah has broken its 21-year-old record for its wettest day as torrential rain sweeps across drought-declared western Queensland, reports the ABC.
Ex-cyclone Esther is combining with an upper trough to bring days of rain, with grass shoots starting to turn dust bowls green.
Rivers are experiencing major floods and homesteads are cut off as records tumble across the region.
Thargomindah airport has had about 128 millimetres since 9:00am yesterday, breaking its record for a 24-hour-period, which was set in 1999, when tracking began there, the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) said.
The town has also broken the record for the most rain in two days and the most rain for March, with 201mm, even though it is only five days into the month.
The wettest March had previously been in 2010 with 199mm, BOM forecaster Felim Hanniffy said.
The iconic outback town of Birdsville has recorded 125mm over two days and yesterday was its coldest March day on record.
Its daytime temperature only reached 21.6 degrees Celsius, Mr Hanniffy said.
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